According to former WWE superstar Dave "The Animal" Batista, he has signed a deal with MMA promotion Strikeforce.
That, however, is not true according to a source with Strikeforce as reported in a story by TMZ.
TMZ reports that the 41-year-old Batista and Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker have been in negotiations and have the majority of his contract worked out, but there are two major sticking points.
The first reported issue is money. Batista was one of the top earners in the WWE. At this point in his career and at his age, he knows he only has a short amount of time to compete in MMA and wants to earn as much as possible. The two sides are reportedly not close on money.
The second issue is scheduling. When Batista left the WWE two months ago, the reason given was to focus on his acting career. "The Animal" has had previous roles in films "Wrong Side of Town" and "Wapakman" starring Manny Pacquaio and Nicole Scherzinger. Batista apparently has television and film roles lined up for the next couple of months.
When Batista was interviewed at Strikeforce: LA last week, he told reporters that he had an offer on the table from an MMA promotion. Batista hinted that the deal was for two big money fights that would be shown on pay-per-view. He also stated that his first opponent would likely be a well-known former headliner.
It is being reported that if Batista does join Strikeforce, his first fight would be against fellow former WWE superstar Bobby Lashley.
Like Batista, Lashley made the jump from wrestling to MMA. Since his first fight in 2008, Lashley has gone a perfect 5-0. He has not competed however since January of this year as he is recovering from a knee injury which is expected to be healed sometime soon.
Many believe that in a fight against Bobby Lashley, Dave Batista would lose due to lack of experience and a greater age. Batista has no previous MMA or college wrestling experience. Before becoming a professional wrestler, he was a bodybuilder.
Since leaving the WWE, Batista has been training at the Affliction gym, however, and has dropped a lot of weight. In the WWE, he was billed as weighing 290 pounds.
There were rumors that the reason why Batista was unable to join Strikeforce right away was due to a 90 day non-compete clause in his WWE contract. That, however, is untrue as his contract has expired and there is not a no-compete clause, and Batista is a free agent.
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