Former WWE champion Kurt Angle reveals multiple declined UFC offers: “Three different times”

By Josh Evanoff - September 4, 2023

Former WWE champion Kurt Angle turned down not one, not two, but three offers from the UFC.

Kurt Angle

The former WWE star is considered to be one of the greatest shoot wrestlers of all time. A multiple-time All-American and former national champion, he famously won the gold at the 1996 Olympic Games. Furthermore, Kurt Angle accomplished the feat injured, wrestling with a broken neck.

Ultimately, he never forgot his amateur wrestling roots, but instead headed for the world of professional wrestling. Over the next few decades, Kurt Angle would become a champion in the WWE, as well as the lesser-known Impact Wrestling. However, given his starpower and wrestling pedigree, many wondered if he’d one day fight in MMA.

Ultimately he didn’t. Furthermore, given his health issues and age, Kurt Angle’s fighting days are over. However, in a recent interview with ESPN, he did reveal that he got close to fighting in the UFC on three different occasions. He was offered deals in 1996, 2006, and 2010, rejecting them all. That last offer came to fight on The Ultimate Fighter Season 10, featuring Kimbo Slice and others.


The Ultimate Fighter 26

“I got offered three different times,” Kurt Angle stated when asked about his talks with the UFC. “First time was right after the Olympics in 1996. Dana White wasn’t involved with the UFC back then. They came to me and they gave me their best contract, and it wasn’t a very good contract. It was ten fights for $150,000. That’s $15,000 per fight… So I decided to go to WWE.” (h/t BloodyElbow)

He continued, “In 2006, when I left the WWE, my manager contacted Dana White… Dana flew me out and put me up in a really nice penthouse suite. He offered me a deal and I considered it, and I ended up turning it down. The reason I turned it down in 2006 was because I just signed a contract with TNA, and Dana White would not let me wrestle and fight at the same time.”

Kurt Angle concluded, “…Dana White told me ‘when you’re done with wrestling, come back to me,’ and I did. 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… 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.”

What do you make of these comments from Kurt Angle? Would you have liked to see him in the UFC?

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM