Bellator President Scott Coker raised a few eyebrows when he said the promotion wasn’t pursuing Fedor Emelianenko, and following Saturday’s announcement, he insists that was the case.

As you likely know by now, at Bellator’s “Dynamite” card, it was announced that Fedor will fight on former PRIDE promoter Nobuyuki Sakakibara’s New Year’s Eve show. While it’s not a Bellator card, it will air on Spike TV, and Bellator fighters are expected to compete at the Japan bound card.

So, did Bellator try to get Fedor after all? Was Coker just throwing up a smoke screen when he said the promotion wasn’t in talks with Emelianenko?

Well, following “Dynamite”, Coker was asked by MMA’s Luke Thomas what the deal was (quote via Bloody

“We never discussed anything financial with him or any negotiations,” Coker said. “We proved that, right? We knew [Sakikabara] was in dialogue with Fedor, so when the contract got signed, we never said anything but we knew it was going to be on Spike TV.”

Thomas went on to ask Coker if he believes this closes the door on Fedor heading to the UFC, and the former Strikeforce promoter said he didn’t know. Coker then opined that “The Last Emperor” could fight for “five or six years”.

Who Fedor will fight has yet to be determined, but lots of MMA fans are likely disappointed the former PRIDE champ isn’t heading to the Octagon next.