Well, this is bizarre.
Despite being in the MMA media all week when UFC officials announced he had signed with the promotion and his subsequent “injury” that prompted his removal from UFC 149, Bibiano Fernandes has released a statement denying that he ever signed with the promotion.
Bibiano posted on his Facebook page:
I would like to make perfectly clear the news concerning my involvement with the UFC. It was announced that I, Bibiano Fernandes have been contracted to fight for the organization at UFC 149 which will take place in the city of Calgary on the 21st of July. I would like to make it clear that I am not a UFC athlete as I did not sign any contract with the UFC organization. Negotiations between the UFC and myself did take place, however, we could not resolve the issues on the table and as a result we did not come to an agreement. The recent reports that have been circulating in the media are false, contrary to what is being said, I am not a UFC athlete. I am a family man before anything else and my profession as an athlete in this sport provides me with the ability and the necessary means to provide for my family. I did not find the terms set before me by the UFC beneficial to my family and as a result an agreement could not be reached and no contract was signed. It should be noted that the UFC is the largest MMA organization in the world however, my personal and professional obligations have brought me to the decision that I will not be a part of the UFC organization at this point in time. The day that an agreement is reached and the terms set forth are beneficial to both parties involved, I will have the most pleasure and satisfaction to fight for the organization while always representing my beloved country. In conclusion, I would like it to be known that I am still the Bantamweight Champion for the Dream organization. Last but not least, I would like to thank God and all my fans and hope they understand my decision.
This is not the first time the UFC has jumped the gun before getting a contract signed. Some may recall when Ikuhisa Minowa was inexplicably added to the UFC roster on UFC.com, despite not actually signing with the promotion.
Where Bibiano fights next remains to be seen, and the UFC has not released any statement regarding the matter at this time.
**UPDATE**: MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani has tweeted that although Bibiano has not announced it officially, he was offered a better contract by ONE FC, so perhaps that’s what happened here.