As MMAWeekly.com first reported, Henderson has already been slated for a return to action in July, but as of Saturday he hadn’t been formally offered the fight with Emelianenko.
Sources on Sunday confirmed that Strikeforce officials had first reached out to Emelianenko’s camp at M-1 Global to begin the negotiations to make the fight happen. ESPN.com initially reported the contact with Emelianenko’s camp about the potential of a Henderson fight.
The sticking point in the negotiations comes down to what weight the fight would take place at. Sources in Emelianenko’s camp have confirmed that the fighter is mulling over the idea of possibly dropping down to light heavyweight or doing an undisclosed catchweight bout with Henderson.
The other sticking point is the possibility of the fight airing on Showtime or a pay-per-view broadcast.
MMAWeekly.com first broke the news that Strikeforce was targeting a July date for a pay-per-view broadcast with former light heavyweight champion Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal facing Roger Gracie on the card.
One other major factor that will push the Emelianenko vs. Henderson fight to happen is the fact that Gegard Mousasi, who was the other fighter in the running to potentially face Henderson, ended up fighting to a draw with late replacement Keith Jardine in their bout at Saturday night’s Strikeforce show in San Diego.
If Mousasi had won, he could have been a possible opponent for Henderson in July as well, but with the fight ending in a draw, that all but eliminates him from contention for now.
If the deal gets done to put Emelianenko in the cage with Henderson, all signs are pointing towards a pay-per-view fight, but nothing is a official at this point.
It could be several weeks before everything is finalized because of the negotiating points that have to be ironed out.
MMAWeekly.com will update the details of a potential Emelianenko vs. Henderson super fight as they become available.