White was recently quoted by Yahoo! Sports as saying, “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.”
However, while White was adamant about Henderson’s new home, Iole caught up with Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker, while in Chicago promoting Saturdays Fedor vs. Rogers fight.
“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.”
Although the rumors will continue until a contract is signed, one thing is for certain, Dan Henderson is a very desirable commodity these days. The former PRIDE champion could make an instant run at Strikeforce light heavyweight title holder Gegard Mousasi, should he sign with the organization. He would bring instant credibility to an organization that has been bolstering its roster on an almost daily basis.
On the flip side to that, with fighters falling due to injuries, the UFC is in need of re-signing the former middleweight and light heavyweight contender. Henderson has proven himself among the elite fighters in both divisions and shown he is still a force within the organization.