Sergei Kharitonov could be the latest Russian fighter to sign with the UFC in 2016.
The veteran heavyweight fighter revealed that there is a current sweepstakes between the UFC, Bellator, and Glory to determine who will enlist Kharitonov’s services in 2016.
“I was contacted by three organizations: UFC, Bellator and Glory,” Kharitonov told MMABoxing.ru. “I will conduct negotiations with them and will soon will make a decision about where I will perform.”
Kharitonov is a veteran of promotions such as PRIDE Fighting Championships, DREAM and Strikeforce, where he holds wins over the likes of current UFC champion Fabricio Werdum, as well as Andrei Arlovski, Alistar Overeem and Pedro Rizzo. He is currently on a four-fight win streak dating back three years. His last loss took place under the Strikeforce banner against Josh Barnett in the heavyweight Grand Prix semi-final in 2011. His most recent win took place earlier this month in the form of a quick TKO win against Kenny Garner.
Over the past two years, Kharitonov has fought for M-1 Global, Tech-Krep Fighting Championships and even dabbled in kickboxing for Glory. Given the contractual freedom to fight wherever he pleased, Kharitonov was cautious about signing away that freedom by joining the UFC during that time.
“As for me, I am 35 years old, I am no longer a young athlete,” Kharitonov recently told MK. “If I sign a contract with the UFC, they will give me one fight a year. And now, in the previous two years, I’ve had almost seven bouts. Therefore, I believe that I chose the right position. I stand where I want and where I am given the opportunity. I fight at the same time with worthy men.”
It will be interesting to see if the UFC will be able to persuade the Russian to sign on the dotted line.
About the author