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« | Home | »

Yomiuri: Fedor in BodogFight long-term

By Zach Arnold | March 24, 2007

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By Zach Arnold

Today’s Yomiuri Hochi newspaper has a report claiming that PRIDE Heavyweight champion Emelianenko Fedor has signed a long-term deal with Calvin Ayre’s BodogFight promotion. The initial thought was that Fedor’s match against Matt Lindland on 4/14 in St. Petersburg, Russia would be on an individual fight contract. However, the Japanese newspaper says that Fedor has signed a longer deal to stay with BodogFight. The paper also claims that Bodog is aiming to book fights for Fedor against Wanderlei Silva and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.

If the report is true, it makes complete and total sense on all levels. BodogFight is closely linked to MFC, which is linked to the Red Devil fight team. Red Devil’s main power source is Vadim Finkelstein (along with Holland manager Apy Echteld), who is Fedor’s backer. Additionally, UFC is not going to pay old PRIDE-level salaries to Silva or Nogueira.

Topics: All Topics, BoDog, Japan, MMA, Media, PRIDE, Zach Arnold | 28 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

28 Responses to “Yomiuri: Fedor in BodogFight long-term”

  1. KennyP says:

    I guess that means that BodogFight will be around for the long term. (IIRC they already have two more seasons of their TV show filmed and waiting to air.) Whether or not they ever become relevant is another matter…

  2. Zach Arnold says:

    I think the bigger question is not how much money Bodog will spend, but how many fighters they get.

    I predict that you will see *a lot* of the top PRIDE fighters go there. Fedor, Alexander, Nogueira brothers, Barnett, Silva, and many others. If they get Silva, they would love to run in Brazil (which has a lot of potential as a market).

  3. samgiant says:

    is it just me or does this sound a little crazy on fedor’s part. the money is probably there and he’ll get to crush everyone they put in front of him but has he been watching the poor level of the fights. some say the level of fighters is up there with ufc and pride but i don’t see it at all. somebody please tell me what i’m not seeing. so in conclusion if fedor wants to keep smashing less skilled fighters(excluding linlund who should put up a fight but lose in the end)and make crap loads of money then this is right up his alley.

  4. Rollo the Cat says:

    Big Nog cannot fight in the USA as far as I know because of his eye, so Bodog or K1 are his only hopes for a big payday.

    I wonder if Fishman will get involved with Calvin on some level.

    The official deal with Pride still hasn’t been announced, has it? Still time to pull out….

  5. Zach Arnold says:

    I wonder if Fishman will get involved with Calvin on some level.

    Given the legal wars right now with online casino gaming in the US, I’d say that a direct relationship between Ed and Calvin would be unlikely.

    Now, through a third party? That might do the trick.

  6. Rollo the Cat says:

    I forgot for a second about Calvin’s “troubles”.

  7. 45 Huddle says:

    Bodog Fight on ION typically gets a .1 rating. So it is about as irrelevant as KOTC at this point in the MMA game.

    Calvin has $55 Million put to the side for this promotion. He plans on using that over 5 years. Whether it will last that long is another question. This piece of info is from Dave Meltzer.

    Fedor in Bodog is actually a really bad thing for the sport. If they can’t sign other top talent, the fans are screwed. And I don’t want to see Fedor fight Lindland, Silva, and other non Heavyweight competitors. And a 4th fight with Nogueira is about as uninteresting as it can get.

    And if I was a legit MMA Heavyweight, I would not take the risk with an organization like Bodog. It has no presence anywhere in the world. It has an owner that could pull the plug at any moment. And the amount of exposure if basically non-existant for a fighters career.

    Of course, if Lindland were to upset Fedor, he becomes about as irrelevant as Bodog itself.

  8. Drew says:

    After this announcement, I can’t really see the Fertittas Era PRIDE doing well at this point in Japan.

    Josh Barnett hasn’t been on good terms with the UFC and already has a close relationship with Bodog, so we could possibly see him there also.

    Ironically 3 of the top 5 heavyweights could/would probably end up in Bodog (Fedor, Big Nog, Barnett) along with the rest of Red Devil (Aleksander and Zentsov) and quite possibly Sergei Khartinov and Igor Vochanchyn (if he ever comes back to MMA) since they are Russian.

    In that possibility, Bodog would have the stronger Heavyweight division then the UFC. But that is a BIG if.

    The dagger for the New PRIDE would be if Gomi and Sakurai ended up in K-1, then I don’t really see them lasting that long this year.

  9. Rollo the Cat says:

    So far no confirmation from any other source. No word on the status of the previously mentioned fighter’s contracts. No offciial sale of Pride yet either. Nothing.

  10. Zach Arnold says:

    To Yomiuri’s credit, they are not a pro-DSE outlet. They were the ones who got in hot water for leaking a report on the $5 million dollar match between Naoya Ogawa and Hidehiko Yoshida at the NYE ‘05 event. That leak promptly got them restricted from access to DSE PR events. Yomiuri has a solid track record.

  11. Zack says:

    Igor Vov is going to be in ADCC this year.

  12. Drew says:

    “Igor Vov is going to be in ADCC this year.”

    Yeah I know, but I was saying if he ever gets back to MMA then he has a chance to fight for Bodog.

    I’m not surprised right now on Sherdog a lot of people are calling Fedor stupid for signing with Bodog (If this is confirmed as true later.) and putting him in the same boat as Vera.

    If anything, this is good for the sport because it forces Zuffa to work with other promotions for superfights. I wouldn’t be suprised to see Fedor fight in an EliteXC event since Shaw has stood by his words (to work with other promotions) and is working with K-1 for their upcoming show in LA. So it wouldn’t be surprising if Pro Eilte and Bodog worked together in getting Fedor to fight in the US again.

  13. Zach Arnold says:

    If anything, this is good for the sport because it forces Zuffa to work with other promotions for superfights. I wouldn’t be suprised to see Fedor fight in an EliteXC event since Shaw has stood by his words (to work with other promotions) and is working with K-1 for their upcoming show in LA. So it wouldn’t be surprising if Pro Eilte and Bodog worked together in getting Fedor to fight in the US again.

    A couple of months after Fuji TV cut ties with PRIDE, there were already rumblings about a Bodog/HEROs relationship. It would make perfect sense for Maeda, Fedor’s first Japanese boss, to bring him back into the fold. Plus Big Nogueira’s agent is Motoko Uchida, who has friendly connections to K-1 backers. It would fit into place.

  14. 45 Huddle says:

    Something tells me The Fertitta’s are a little smarter then buying a company and getting less than 20% of the fighter base.

    Either way, to the America fight audience, the UFC Title is still the only title that means anything. We can discuss it all we want, but at least 66% of the Top talent will be under one banner, and anybody out of that structure will have a hard time claiming to be #1 unless they are Fedor.

  15. Erik says:

    Again you are WRONG.

    Try and get someone who speaks Japanese to translate for you instead of using online translators.

    The article does say that Fedor has signed a long-term deal with PRIDE, however it does not say that they are trying to match him up with Noguiera or Silva. What it actually says that it looks as though Noguiera and Silva will continue to fight for PRIDE.

    The professionalism in your articles is laughable.

  16. Erik says:

    Fedor signed a long term deal with Bodog, not PRIDE.

    However Silva and Noguiera are going to be continuing on with PRIDE according to that particular article anyway.

  17. Drew says:

    “The article does say that Fedor has signed a long-term deal with PRIDE, however it does not say that they are trying to match him up with Noguiera or Silva. What it actually says that it looks as though Noguiera and Silva will continue to fight for PRIDE.”

    The translated article said PRIDE tried to renew the contract, but Bodog outbid them.

    The point is that we don’t know the details of the Bodog contract (until it’s confirmed that he’s signed with them). It could be that he’s able to compete in other promotions also meaning he could continue to be the PRIDE heavyweight champion. In which case Zuffa would have to negotiate with Bodog in order for Fedor to fight in the US.

  18. JThue says:

    With Ayre, ahem, banned from ringside in the US, signing for bodog could actually open up the MOST interesting matchups for Fedor, through cooperation with the open Pro-Elite network, ties with K-1 and Ayre’s checkbook. People dismissing it as a stupid move really need to sit down and think through this for more than just one split second. What is the alternative? Stay with PRIDE and fight f*cking Cro Cop again on NYE? We know Barnett isn’t sticking around under Zuffa ownership, plus bodog run by their own rules where they can, and will not limit Fedor’s opponents to those in the HW weight-class. I’d certainly pay to see him against Antonio Silva, Choi-Hong Man or Lesnar. Add the Lindland fight and Josh Barnett and there’s (at least)one long term contract fulfilled right there.

  19. Erik says:

    ‘The translated article said PRIDE tried to renew the contract, but Bodog outbid them.’

    I know I mistyped when I said Fedor signed with PRIDE, i fixed it with the following post.

    My point was however that there was no mention of Silva or Noguiera fighting Fedor in Bodog or signing for them as Zach alluded to.

  20. Zach Arnold says:

    My point was however that there was no mention of Silva or Noguiera fighting Fedor in Bodog or signing for them as Zach alluded to.

    It says those two names specifically in regards to potential targets for Bodog, which is perfectly reasonable given the free agent hunt that’s about to begin.

    PRIDEは、新たに設立される新会社がイベント名を残して運営する。選手との契約や、過去の映像の権利などが移り、ヴァンダレイ・シウバや、アントニオ・ホドリゴ・ノゲイラらは継続参戦する見込み

    I didn’t use an online translator here. Sorry.

    On a sidenote, this story right here illuminates why I thought the value of the PRIDE assets would be small — because a lot of top guys are free agents and not under deals.

  21. The Citizen says:

    Is anyone familiar with the Bodog rule structure? Is it similar to Japanese mma rules?

  22. David says:

    I don’t blame Fedor one bit for going where the money is. We can talk about wanting to fight the best competition, cementing a legacy, etc etc, but he is probably being offered significantly more by Bodog than he would be by the UFC, so more power to him. I hope Calvin Eyre’s big pockets can get bodogfight some publicity and a tv show. Bodogfight aggressively advertises online, but nobody knows their product, so they have no chance at making money unless they get a tv deal.

    On a completely unrelated note, this is from Meltzer’s site in regards to Mayweather vs. De la Hoya, I mean Ortiz vs. White:

    Ortiz vs. White result

    Is that Tito Ortiz no-showed the weigh-in and the fight never happened.

    The Nevada State Athletic Commission was not happy with this turn of events as they had officials there. Dana White was there and got weighed-in. There was no communication from Ortiz as to why he wasn’t there. Ortiz did call White and leave him a messages saying that he was letting him off the hook, but White didn’t think that message meant he was cancelling the match.

    Spike TV was scheduled to air a 90 minute television special building up the PPV of the fight.

  23. 45 Huddle says:

    They are on Network TV.

  24. Zach Arnold says:

    Any lawyers out there with experience in copyright issues – feel free to write to me. Please.

  25. David says:

    45 Huddle:

    I don’t know what “Ion” is, I don’t get that channel, and I’ve never heard of it. Bodog needs to get on a channel that has some name recognition and is carried by all or most of the cable providers.

  26. pligg.com says:

    Fedor Emelianenko signs to BodogFight long-term…

    Today’s Yomiuri Hochi newspaper has a report claiming that PRIDE Heavyweight champion Emelianenko Fedor has signed a long-term deal with Calvin Ayre’s BodogFight promotion….

  27. [...] Zach Arnold from FightOpinion.com first pointed out a report from Japan a few weeks ago that stated the PRIDE deal may not have been finalized and that Emelianenko may have already inked a Bodog deal. [...]

  28. [...] Fedor Emelianenko (25-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC), arguably the No. 1 fighter in the world and PRIDE Fighting Championships’ heavyweight champion, recently stated that a contract extension he reportedly signed with PRIDE late in 2006 was not officially completed, according to CBS SportsLine.com’s Sam Caplan. PRIDE was recently purchased by Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta, primary owners of the UFC’s parent company. And though PRIDE has a number of elite fighters, Emelianenko was surely considered the most important piece of the acquisition. During a conference call last week, UFC president Dana White stated that the fighter was signed. That’s not the case, according to Emelianenko. From SportsLine.com: “The (Pride) contract hasn’t been concluded,” Emelianenko said through a representative of Bodog Fight, which will promote Emelianenko’s next fight against Matt Lindland on April 14. “Yes, we have agreement with Pride, but I and (agent) Vadim Finkelshtain have not come to terms with them,” Emelianenko said. The fear is that Emelianenko might possibly sign — or has already signed — a long-term deal with BodogFight, an organization that would seem a legitimate threat (with deep pockets) to compete with UFC/PRIDE. Zach Arnold from FightOpinion.com first pointed out a report from Japan a few weeks ago that stated the PRIDE deal may not have been finalized and that Emelianenko may have already inked a Bodog deal. Head over to FightOpinion.com for the full story. __________________ My UFC Fantasy League Picks Diego Sanchez Michael Bisping Kendall Grove Luke Cummo Compete in the Ultimate Fighter Fan League and visit their forums here Need help getting started, let me know. It’s under construction right now [...]