In the world of professional wrestling, Kurt Angle’s name shines brightly as a WWE legend
Recently, Kurt Angle disclosed that he had conversations with Dana White during his time in the business. He said that he turned down a $500K offer to compete against Kimbo Slice in the UFC.
In a candid interview with ESPN MMA journalist Marc Raimondi, Angle shed light on the various offers he had received throughout his career in WWE and TNA which enticed him to transition into the world of mixed martial arts. Despite previously turning down offers from different promotions, Angle decided to sit down with Dana White to explore the possibility of participating in the tenth season of the TUF reality series.
This particular season featured heavyweight contenders, with Rashad Evans and Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson serving as coaches.
Angle recalled the conversation, saying, “When I thought I was going to be done with wrestling, I went back to Dana, and Dana came back with an idea to be in (The Ultimate Fighter) with Kimbo Slice…'[He said] I’ll give you a half-million to be on the show. And then I’ll give you this contract a six-fight deal regardless whether you win it, The Ultimate Fighter, or not. You’ll have a contract when it’s over.”
However enticing the offer may have been, Angle’s decision wasn’t merely financial. He brought up his well-documented history of neck injuries that happened before winning the gold medal at the 1996 Summer Olympics as well as during his pro wrestling career.
He said that at that point in his life, the injuries and his advanced age made him rethink switching to MMA. He said: “I thought about it. At that point in my life I was 41-years-old…I broke my neck five times. I sat back and I realized – I started training for it a little bit, and I realized, ‘I’m past my prime, I can’t do this.’ So, I had to turn it down.”
It’s intriguing to consider what might have transpired if Kurt Angle had accepted Dana White’s offer to participate in TUF and face Kimbo Slice.
Despite turning down several invitations over the years to join the UFC and participate in MMA, Kurt Angle doesn’t regret his choice.
The 1996 Olympic gold medalist in wrestling has a highly successful career in both WWE and TNA. He headlined matches against wrestlers like The Rock, Steve Austin, The Undertaker, and Sting.
He said that he had no regrets, stating: “It makes you question ‘did you do the right thing?’, but I look back and I say ‘you know what?’ I had a pretty stellar career in pro-wrestling, so I can’t regret that.”