Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White has accomplished more than many people could dream of during his time as the UFC boss; however, he will always regret never signing the one fighter that alluded him.
He tried and tried to make it happen, even flying to a "crazy island" in "the middle of nowhere" to strike a deal with the Russian superstar and his ironclad management group headed by Vadim Finkelstein.
Apparently White nearly made a mega-fight between "The Last Emperor" and former UFC champion Brock Lesnar at Dallas Stadium back a few years ago, but it fell apart at the 11th hour when Emelianenko's father passed away and the 36-year-old made the decision to retire from mixed martial arts (MMA) competition for good.
Emelianenko will definitely go down as the greatest MMA fighter to never have competed in the world's premier organization, and while he may be totally fine with that, White is not.
When asked by a fan at Friday's (July 5, 2013) UFC Fan Expo what is his biggest regret as the UFC's head-honcho, White stated (via Dave Doyle) that it is the fact he was never able to come to terms with the Sambo specialist.
White has stated on multiple occasions that he never felt Emelianenko was the greatest heavyweight ever, but he wanted to have him fight in the UFC so he could be proven right or wrong.
With Emelianenko having not competed since June 2012 and unlikely to come out of retirement unless it's "god's will," it seems there's a good chance the Russian never stepping foot inside the Octagon will remain White's biggest regret going forward.