WWE Hall Of Famer Kurt Angle chose pro wrestling as a career over MMA after winning an Olympic Gold Medal in 1996.
In an interview with ESPN, Angle revealed he was offered $150,000 for a 15-fight contract by UFC.
“I love fighting, but I don’t love it that much to get my butt kicked for 15 grand [per fight]. So, I decided to go to WWF and when I got there, I had so much success early on.
And then UFC started becoming mainstream in the early 2000s, and this is when I was having a stellar career in WWE, winning World Championships, beating The Rock for the World Championship, beating ‘Stone Cold’ [Steve Austin] for the World Championship. And I thought, ‘Man, I would love to fight, but I already had this great career going on right now.'”
Angle said that he received another offer from UFC when he joined TNA in 2006, but UFC President Dana White didn’t want him to wrestle if he signed with UFC.
“Dana White would not let me wrestle and fight at the same time. And I didn’t want to go back to TNA and say, ‘Listen, that contract I just signed is null and void.”
Angle got one final offer from UFC in 2009 in which he was offered $500,000 to compete on The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights.
“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. But I’m very grateful for the offers Dana White gave me. He is an incredible person.”
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