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Golden Glory: Alistair Overeem Open to Signing Exclusive Contract with UFC

Written by Tom Ngo
August 11th, 2011
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Strikeforce Heavyweight Champ Alistair Overeem

According to Golden Glory co-owner Bas Boon, they ironed out all of their payment and sponsorship issues with Zuffa, LLC attorneys when heavyweight John Olav Einemo committed to competing at UFC 131 in June. Boon states “we did not have a choice and never said we would not fight in the future or that we would refuse to work” if Zuffa went against the Dutch management company’s long-standing policy of getting paid directly.

“The Zuffa lawyer explained that the fighters could open an account at a bank were the UFC did their banking and the check would clear in only two days instead of 6 weeks till 8 weeks (that’s how long it takes to clear a check in a foreign country which was also an issue for some of the fighters) and they could then transfer the amount to the final destination at their choice,” Boon expressed in a statement released Thursday.

“The reason that the Golden Glory management company is doing this business for the GG fighters for over 12 years with payment directly to the management company is for the benefit of the fighters, coaches and trainers are paid on time and the management company will take care of bookkeeper and taxes and exchange rates and legal help for the fighters.”

Prior to Zuffa’s March acquisition of Strikeforce, Boon claims Golden Glory received payments directly from Strikeforce on behalf of their clients without issue. Although much has changed within MMA’s landscape since the purchase, GG was more than willing to roll with the punches – which included Zuffa’s strict sponsorship rules where “if you can sponsor the fighter, you should sponsor the organization first.”

“I understand this from a business point of [view], but some companies can’t [afford] to pay 100K or more to an organization,” Boon said. “We just wanted the things as they were before, but it was far from what it was before. The payment was done how the UFC wanted and again we agreed and did the same as in Vancouver [for UFC 131], so that matter was solved, so I do not understand why [UFC president Dana White] claims we did not agree?

“Maybe there is a miscommunication and Dana was not well informed that the direct payment issue was solved and no longer an issue.”

Over the last couple of weeks, GG fighters Alistair Overeem, his brother Valentijn , Marloes Coenen as well as Einemo were all fired from the world’s premier MMA promotion for the alleged misunderstanding. Now that the Dutch management group has shared their side of the story, Boon is hoping he’ll be able to bring his prized possession to the Octagon.

“We just want to be able to produce great fighters and create great fights for the fans, we have no intention for co-promotion deals and are even willing to make an exclusive deal for Alistair Overeem to fight in the UFC, if the terms are right,” he expressed.

Overeem owns an impressive 35-11 (1 NC) mixed martial arts resume. He hasn’t lost a fight since September 2007, rattling off 10 consecutive wins during his current run. He became Strikeforce’s first heavyweight champion in November 2007, but only defended the crown once when he violently put Brett Rogers down in May 2010.

The 31-year-old is scheduled to compete in Glory World Series’ MMA/Kickboxing tournament in Russia sometime in October.

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