According to Maximum Fighting Championship President Mark Pavelich, UFC veteran Drew Fickett will no longer be allowed to compete for the Canadian-based promotion.
Pavelich and Fickett embroiled in a public feud over Fickett's decision to accept a fight on one day's notice at the June 27 Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Thomson event. The fight was cancelled when Strikeforce learned the details of Fickett's MFC contract, which stated Fickett was not allowed to compete within five weeks of his fight against Ryan Ford at MFC 17 on July 25.
When his phone calls went neglected by Fickett's camp, Pavelich left a profanity-laced threat on the voice mail of Fickett's manager.
Pavelich released a statement to MMAFighting.com early Sunday morning to explain his side of the story.
I would like to take this opportunity to offer a personal response to comments and actions taken by Drew Fickett over the past 72 hours.
Drew had agreed to and signed a contract to fight on the Maximum Fighting Championship show on July 25 for the welterweight title against Ryan Ford. Over the last few days, Drew has caused severe problems and therefore we find him in complete breach of his contract.
We were shocked to learn Drew agreed on one day's notice to fight as a middleweight in another organization's event this past Friday. When I contacted this other organization, its owner immediately cancelled Drew's fight when informed that he was under contract to fight on the MFC show and as part of Mr. Fickett's contract he was not allowed to take another fight up to five weeks before the MFC show.
When I learned of Drew's intentions to take this fight, I repeatedly attempted to reach Drew's manager to find out why. After numerous attempts to reach his manager went unreturned, I did leave a voice mail which has since been made public. I admit to being very upset, angry and frustrated not only by Drew's action but also by not being able to reach his manager and the tone of that voice mail reflected my feelings.
Shortly afterwards I realized that I should have taken a deep breath and calmed down before leaving that message and I profusely apologized to Drew's manager. I am not proud of that message but as the owner of a major fight organization I felt that I and my staff which works tirelessly to put on afirst-class show were being treated very disrespectfully by Drew. If he had read his contract he would have realized he shouldn't have taken the fight and he should not have attempted to get away with it.
Then for Drew to post the private voice mail - which was not left on his phone - was just ridiculous and petty.
This was the last straw in a series of unprofessional acts by Drew. He failed to send a promotional photo that we wanted to use for advertising the fight even after the MFC had sent him gloves and even went as far as being willing to book a photographer to take the pictures. He also failed to send any documents pertaining to his medicals, passport and border information.
Drew even stated in an email after the posting of the voice mail that he was still willing to fight in the MFC. But after that he added that he would want to be paid after the weigh-in one day before the fight. There is no question in my mind that Drew would have stiffed us completely and run off with our money without fighting as some sort of warped payback for the MFC protecting its investment in him and doing everything in its power to not allow him to fight within the five-week period prior to July 25.
We now completely understand why that despite his excellent record so many organizations will not work with Drew and we have a pretty clear indication why he has been banned by the UFC.
Drew Fickett will never fight in the MFC. As evidenced by his latest actions Drew clearly does not want to fight Ryan Ford for the MFC title despite signing a contract to do so.
The MFC has never had any problems with any fighters who do not breach their contract nor have we had any problems with fighters with issues that we do control such as payment for fights, travel itineraries, etc. Fighters we have problems with are ones who are neurotic misfits with poor management who won't take responsibility for their actions, who won't live up to fulfilling their contracts and those who do not act as professional athletes.
I will take all steps necessary to settle this issue legally and I will also move immediately into replacing Drew Fickett with a top-level fighter to contend for the MFC welterweight title against Ryan Ford on July 25. Mark Pavelich, Owner/President