Dana White would like the world to know that Dan Henderson has signed a deal with Strikeforce “1000% guaranteed.”
A source close to the situation told Yahoo! Sports on Monday that Henderson had signed with Strikeforce, spurning the Ultimate Fighting Championship, for whom he has fought since 2007. [Ed. note: spurned? really?]
White said Wednesday, “I guarantee you 1,000 percent that Dan Henderson is signed by Strikeforce.”
“Dan and I have been friends and we will continue to be friends, but it just didn’t work out and he went to Strikeforce,” White said.
Big news, right? Yeah, except he hasn’t. Scott Coker admits to having a conversation with Henderson and would love to sign him, but says he’s just been too damned busy promoting two events this weekend to do anything about it.
“Honestly, I got a call from Dan’s management a couple of days ago telling me Dan had turned down the UFC’s offer,” Coker said. “I guess the UFC made an offer and put a deadline on it. They turned it down and were calling to talk to me, but I told him I have this huge fight and there’s a tremendous amount going on and I couldn’t really deal with it at this point.”
“Everyone who watches MMA knows the kind of fighter Dan Henderson is,” Coker said. “He’s a tough, aggressive, fun guy to watch. Who wouldn’t want a guy like that? Of course we do, and that’s why we’ve spoken with them.
“Honestly, though, we don’t have a deal with him yet. I’ve been up to my eyeballs working on this fight and I just haven’t had time to deal with that yet.”
If Dan Henderson actually signs with Strikeforce, I don’t think Dana White will be the one to break the news. And I wouldn’t bet on it happening either. I’m not sure Strikeforce could afford to pay Hendo what he made on his last UFC contract let alone whatever he’s asking for now.
Update: The denial from Hendo’s camp:
Dan Henderson remains an unsigned commodity, the fighter’s business partner and manager, Aaron Crecy, told Sherdog.com late Thursday, responding to a new report that states the top-five middleweight has signed with Strikeforce.
“Dan hasn’t signed anywhere,” said Crecy.
Crecy added that Dana’s 1000% guaranteed statement is “100% false.”
“Anyone that would report that is misinformed,” he said.
When asked if Henderson was still in negotiations with both the UFC and Strikeforce, Crecy said, “He’s open to all possibilities. Nothing is imminent.”