When I first read yesterday’s report by Greg Savage of Sherdog.com that stated Fedor Emelianenko has never signed a formal agreement with M-1 Global, I was left with the same reaction as just about everyone else: bewilderment.
And I mean, complete and total bewilderment. You know, the type of feeling you only experience when you wake up in the afternoon following a night of drinking nothing but grain alcohol.
I first read the report while on the phone with a friend and I was caught by the headline on my news reader. I had to take a look and when I did, all I could do was shake my head.
The thing that amazes me is the amount of money that was rumored to have been spent on that initial press conference in New York last October to announce that Sibling Sports had acquired M-1 from Vadim Finkelstein and his partners and had also signed Fedor as its signature star.
According to Savage, Fedor never signed anything more than a letter of intent. How do you conduct such a lavish press conference with nothing more than a signed letter of intent? That would have been like the Yankees sending out a press release and holding a presser at Yankee Stadium to announce they had re-signed Alex Rodriguez even though in reality he had only agreed to a deal in principle.
A deal is not done until all parties have signed a contract.
In light of this news, many people are claiming that Fedor is now officially a free agent. I beg to differ. While a signed letter of intent is not an ironclad contract, it would give Sibling a wobbly leg to stand on if they wanted to press the issue in a United States court of law. Yes, I’m not an attorney and I’m sure an overly-litiguous mind will try and question that statement but save your energy because it’s a moot point. Even in spite of a signed letter, the wheels are in motion to try and finalize an agreement that will make Fedor’s divorce from Sibling Sports official. Furthermore, it would not be surprising if M-1 assets were returned to Finkelstein and his partners in exchange for some or all of the up front it has received from Sibling.