Fans went wild Thursday when Josh Barnett’s (Pictured) fighter profile magically appeared on UFC.com. However, despite whatever information the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s official website provides, which includes Barnett’s latest victory from just five days ago, “The Warmaster” is not currently an Octagon athlete.
“But seriously, beyond my profile being up on UFC.com, I am not signed to the UFC. Sorry you guys all got your hopes up,” Barnett tweeted this afternoon.
Zuffa, LLC can’t simply transition him over to the UFC now that Strikeforce has closed its doors. Unlike most of his former Strikeforce counterparts, Barnett became a free agent immediately after steamrolling Nandor Guelmino over the weekend.
The 35-year-old is open to returning to the UFC, but he has also expressed great interest in resuming his professional wrestling career. In fact, Barnett’s in-cage post-fight interview on Saturday was rather WWE-inspired.
UFC president Dana White and Barnett have had a rocky relationship (to put it mildly). Their beef dates back to March 2002 when Barnett beat Randy Couture to win the UFC heavyweight title.
Barnett was subsequently stripped of his hardware after testing positive for a banned substance. On a side note, he flunked another drug exam prior to his Affliction fight against Fedor Emelianenko, which ultimately forced the upstart promotion to call it quits.
White claims he’d be willing to work with Barnett again, despite calling him a “cheater” not too many moons ago. However, if the heavyweight’s asking price is too high, it would be hard to imagine White would be heartbroken if they went their separate ways.