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 Mark Cuban Sues UFC for Contract Clarification on Couture!

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PostSubject: Mark Cuban Sues UFC for Contract Clarification on Couture!   Mark Cuban Sues UFC for Contract Clarification on Couture! Icon_minitimeSat 16 Feb 2008, 12:23 am

Mark Cuban Sues UFC for Contract Clarification on Couture! Randy-couture

Mark Cuban, the owner of the upstart HDNet Fights organization and MMA-centric HDNet cable station, has filed suit against the UFC to get a declaratory judgment concerning the contractual status of Randy Couture.
The report comes from Adam Swift of

Couture, the UFC’s heavyweight champion, resigned from the organization this past October citing a number of issues, including his compensation, the UFC’s inability to sign then-top free agent Fedor Emelianenko, and what he perceives to be a lack of respect from UFC executives. The 44-year-old Couture plans to wait until his fight contract (July) and promotional/broadcasting contract (October) expire so he can compete with other fight organizations.

However, the UFC contends that Couture will remain under contract to the organization until he fulfills the terms of his fight contract, most notably, fighting twice more in the UFC. Due to a retirement clause in Couture’s contract, the UFC contends that he can’t simply wait for the contract to expire.

The matter will go to court next month, which includes a preliminary hearing March 4 in Las Vegas.

But, on Wednesday, Cuban and the Texas-based HDNet Fights organization filed suit in district court in Dallas. While the UFC’s lawsuit centers on Couture’s employment contract and its one-year non-compete clause, Cuban wants clarification on the status of Couture under his promotional contract.

“The lawsuit filed by HDNet Fights asks the Texas court to provide the company with declaratory relief — a ruling on when Couture’s promotional contract will expire,” Swift reported for “A favorable ruling could clear the way for a highly anticipated showdown between Couture and Fedor Emelianenko this fall, potentially promoted by HDNet Fights.“

HDNet Fights launched in 2007 and has hosted two shows to date. However, using the all-high-definition cable station HDNet, the organization has signed deals to co-promote shows with some of the sport’s top fight promotions, including the International Fight League, Strikeforce, SportFight and the Canadian-based Maximum Fighting Championships.

Emelianenko is currently signed to a non-exclusive contract with M-1 Global.
* * * *

Perhaps related to this story, in a press release issued today, HDNet promises “HUGE breaking news” during tonight’s episode of “Inside MMA,” which airs at 9:30 p.m. ET.

by Kenny Rice and Bas Rutten, and scheduled to appear as guests are Randy Couture, Kim Couture (his wife) and female MMA fighter and “American Gladiator” Gina Carano.

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