Barnett Declines Fedor Fight

Written by Tom Ngo
October 2nd, 2008

After Affliction Entertainment rescheduled their “Day of Reckoning” event until January 24th, it opened the door for them to have company golden boy Fedor Emelianenko on the card. By that time, he would be completely healed from his right thumb injury, and fully prepared to defend his WAMMA title.  Josh Barnett has always called for a shot against the consensus #1 heavyweight in the world, however with the opportunity now handed to him on a silver platter, he has decided to decline the fight.

“It would be (logical) for the fans, but the fans don’t understand contracts or the way things have been put down on the back end in terms of the business aspect of it,” Barnett told MMAWeekly.com. “Or the details between both of the fighters. So, it’s not really that we want to rob the fans of something, it’s just that I don’t think it’s possible.”

If one were to read between the lines, it seems as though Barnett is not satisfied with the financial numbers that Affliction presented to him to take the fight, and is willing to walk away from challenging the most significant fighter in all of MMA because of it.

Barnett didn’t want to get into specifics regarding the situation, in fact preferred to say next to nothing, except for the fact that the fight against Fedor will not be taking place on Affliction’s second ever MMA promotion.

“There’s just some times it’s better to keep your mouth shut and just not really talk too much about things,” he said. “I’m not trying to make anybody look bad or talk about the details of it, but it’s just not a fight that’s going to happen in January. And I think that the feeling is actually mutual.

“There’s a lot of factors that go into this one. It’s not so simple…I live for doing this my way and I’m never going to take second best from anyone ever.”

Affliction has yet to name an alternative to Barnett, however Andrei Arlovski is also scheduled to be competing on the card, and he too does not have an opponent. However, Arlovski will be fighting Roy Nelson this weekend at “EliteXC: Heat,” and his ability to walk away from that fight healthy will be the deciding factor on his availability.

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