Barnett has a message for the
UFC heavyweight division.
“The enemy has returned. I've signed with the UFC, and no
heavyweight is safe,” Barnett recently wrote on Twitter. “They're
all due a lesson in violence from ‘The Warmaster.’”
Barnett’s tweet serves as the first official confirmation of the
heavyweight’s UFC signing. Sherdog.com reported the catch
wrestler’s imminent Octagon return earlier this week after
confirming the deal with a source close to the negotiations.
A longtime mixed martial artist and professional wrestler, Barnett
began his fighting career in 1997 and made his UFC debut three
years later. “The Warmaster” bested Randy
Couture to win the promotion’s heavyweight title in 2002 but
was later stripped of the belt after testing positive for banned
Following a successful career in Japan under the Pancrase and Pride
Fighting Championships banners, Barnett returned stateside to
compete for Affliction and then Strikeforce, advancing to the
finals of the latter promotion’s heavyweight grand prix before
suffering a unanimous decision defeat to Daniel
Cormier. The 35-year-old last competed on Jan. 12 at
Strikeforce’s final show, where he submitted an overmatched
Guelmino in just 2:11.