2009 just called, it wants its contract negotiations back.
Dan Henderson is currently a free agent in the mixed martial arts (MMA) world. You just haven't really heard about it because "Hendo" hasn't been shopping around and trying to sell himself to the highest bidder.
That's because "Hendo" wants to stay with Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and doesn't want to end his storied fight career with anybody else.
But according to the former PRIDE FC middleweight and welterweight champion, his management team and UFC officials are currently far apart on making a deal. In fact, Henderson revealed during his appearance on "The MMA Hour" that ZUFFA is trying to get him as "cheap as possible."
Something "Dangerous Dan" says they try to do with everyone:
"We're working on a deal with UFC but there is still a ways to go to get the deal done. We're working on it. It's mostly financial (issues). It's a value issue. I'm confident we should be able to get a deal done. We are a ways apart, but I want to have a meeting with them, we've mostly done emails and by phone so far. I was fairly surprised that we are as far away from what I felt a fair offer would have been. I don't know if I would go as far as saying I was insulted, because I know what they're trying to accomplish in trying to get everybody for as cheap as they can, that's what they like to do. I don't take it personally. But, it was a lot lower than I expected."
"What I was asking for was still a decent pay cut from what I was making, which I thought was fair."
When asked if he slashed his asking price by half of what he was previously making, Henderson had this to say:
"I think they are trying to slash it to quite a bit more than that. I just feel like that's not realistic to where it should be. But, we're working on it."
Henderson's comments about a drastic pay cut are rather interesting, especially after hearing UFC President Dana White say that his fighters are making more money now than they ever have, while addressing the current state of UFC to Sherdog.
"It's growing in North America. The sport has never been bigger. The sport has never had more opportunity than it has right now. I think part of the problem is that we fly under the radar. We don't go out and beat our chest. We don't come out and report our earnings. If you talk to the fighters; people want to talk about pay-per-view numbers being down this, that and everything else, these fighters made more money this year than they've ever made in the history of the sport. It's per fight. We may have more fights going on, but Georges St. Pierre fought twice. Anderson Silva fought twice. Chris Weidman will fight twice this year. It's not like these guys are fighting for us five times a year. You got guys who have come back-to-back like Urijah Faber who will five five times in 11 months. There's a couple of cases like that, but guys have never made more money. There's never been more money in the sport than there is now and it's never been bigger in North America or anywhere else in the world. But we don't talk about it. We don't release our earnings."
I guess that means more money for everyone, except a slumping "Hendo."
Henderson was last seen getting knocked out by Vitor Belfort in the very first round of UFC Fight Night 32 last November. The fight was the last on his previous UFC contract and the loss marked his third straight loss with the organization.
Perhaps that's why Dana and Co. feel the 43-year old isn't worth the $250,000 price tag he used to command.