Dave Meltzer has a piece at MMAJunkie.com discussing Russian heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko's difficulty being a top draw despite being widely considered one of the top fighters in the world.
Tucked away in the piece are these two paragraphs detailing the negotiations between the UFC and Fedor last year (bolds added by FightTicker.com):
Emelianenko was offered a multi-fight deal last year with UFC after the company purchased PRIDE, which included a seven-figure signing bonus and a minimum of $1.5 million per fight, a level of pay nobody in MMA has ever achieved. The company expected to make what would have been one of the biggest fights in MMA history against then-champion Randy Couture.
But negotiations fell apart on a number of points, from the UFC's demand for promotional exclusivity and a clause that he could be cut with multiple losses, to Emelianenko's management demanding the contractual ability to turn down opponents and wanting to partner with UFC in holding events in Russia.
Fedor never signed with the UFC which led UFC heavyweight champ Randy Couture to ask to be released from the promotion in order to fight the man considered the world's top heavyweight.
In addition, Meltzer states that one of the men Fedor did not want to fight at the time was Tim Sylvia, the very fighter he will face this Saturday on Affliction's debut card in Anaheim, Calif.