Alistair Overeem may be a Zuffa outcast for now, but it's unlikely to remain that way. According to reports by MMA Weekly (via ESPN 790 in Miami), the UFC has engaged in discussions with the exiled Strikeforce heavyweight champion, and promotion president Dana White is confident a deal can be struck.
"We're talking to Overeem," White confirmed when speaking to Dan Le Batard on ESPN 790 in Miami. "When everything fell apart, you heard me say we can't do business with these guys the way they want to do business, meaning his management.
"Well, they've changed their opinions on how they can do business with us, so now we can."
White's reference alludes to the controversial fallout between Zuffa and Team Golden Glory over the payment methods insisted on by the fight camp. Golden Glory manager Bas Boon asserted that Zuffa only pay camp managers, who would then allocate the money to their fighters. Zuffa balked at the notion, maintaining that they were only willing to hand the paychecks to the fighters directly.
Eventually the two obstinate sides reached an impasse, leading to the release of several Golden Glory fighters from Zuffa promotions, including Overeem and former Strikeforce women's bantamweight champion Marloes Coenen.
Now a month removed from the incident, Boon has seemingly changed his tune and the two sides are back at the negotiating table, hard at work to bring the 31-year-old Dutch striker to the UFC's heavyweight division -- even if it means exclusivity.
"We have no intention for co-promotion deals," Boon said. "And are even willing to make an exclusive deal for Alistair Overeem to fight in the UFC, if the terms are right."
For now the UFC and Golden Glory will diligently work to settle those terms, but from the outside it certainly appears that Overeem is closer to his shot in the Octagon than ever before.