Money Talks, and so Does Barnett

Written by Tom Ngo
January 24th, 2009

Once again, WAMMA heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko and Josh Barnett will be competing on the same fight card. And once again it will not be against each other. It has happened time and again, however most thought that today’s Affliction “Day of Reckoning” event would have finally put an end to that, but money talks, and for Barnett he couldn’t hear anything Affliction was saying.

“Basically, I’ll be looking for that when Fedor and I finally step in the ring,” Barnett said about the inevitable payday that will come with his matchup against Emelianenko. “They better pony up the money to make it a huge event.”

Affliction Entertainment and Barnett were in talks last year to have the two headline “Day of Reckoning,” however talks fell through as Barnett stated the two sides couldn’t “come to terms,” meaning, Affliction didn’t offer him enough money.

So Affliction chose to instead have Emelianenko defend his title against former UFC heavyweight champ Andrei Arlovski, and Barnett to face the experienced Gilbert Yvel.

“I’ve got Yvel ahead of me and he wants to knock my block off and possibly bite it,” Barnett stated. “I got to make sure that I show up ready to go.”

Without a doubt, Barnett would much rather be facing Emelianenko in the main event at the Honda Center, but things didn’t work out that way.  He knows that he has to stay focused on the opponent at hand, otherwise it could be a very bad night for him.

“I was fine with that,” he stated about not fighting for the WAMMA title.  “If they were going to give me a solid offer, then I’d take it. (Yvel’s) got the credentials to belong in the ring.  He’s got like 38 wins and 35 or something crazy like that are by knockout.”

According to Sherdog.com, Yvel actually has 30 (T)KOs. And if the Dutch fighter decides to turn the bout into a street fight, Barnett is more than comfortable standing in the pocket and exchanging.

“Slugfests, I’m fine with those,” said a confident Barnett. “I do okay. I just got to make sure that he doesn’t catch me with some shot where I’m not putting pressure on him and I’m not where I need to be. He needs to be careful that I don’t get a hold of him and put him on his back.  We’ll see what kind of rhythm he can get going. Even if he thinks I’m going to be taking him down, I’m going to be hitting him. When he thinks I’m going to hit him, then I’ll try to take him down. So he’s going to be guessing.”

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