Fedor Emelianenko is the former and final Pride heavyweight champion and the former WAMMA heavyweight champion. He is thought to be one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world, along with Georges St. Pierre, B.J. Penn and Anderson Silva. He has only four losses in over thirty fights.
Strikeforce Losing Streak Edit
He most recently faced jiu jitsu specialist Fabricio Werdum, losing for his first decisive defeat and his first defeat in nine years via triangle choke early in the very first round.
He next faced Antonio Silva in the first round of the Strikeforce heavyweight tournament. Silva defeated Fedor via doctor stoppage due to a swollen eye between the second and third rounds, to deliver Fedor's second straight loss. After the loss, Emelianenko contemplated retirement from the sport.
He next agreed to face current Strikeforce light-heavyweight champion and former Pride 205 lbs. and 185 lbs. champion Dan Henderson. The fight would take place at heavyweight and it was officially a 'superfight.' Dan Henderson defeated Fedor via controversial first-round TKO. Fedor said that his future in MMA was "at God's will." After the loss, Fedor was cut from the Zuffa-owned Strikeforce promotion.
Outside Strikeforce Edit
M-1 Global stated that Fedor had no plans to retire after his third straight loss. They stated that the legendary heavyweight planned to make his return on an M-1 Global card in Russia in the fall of 2011. Gabriel Gonzaga was considered as a possible opponent, along with Gonzaga's fellow UFC veterans Mike Whitehead and Travis Wiuff.
The opponent that Emelianenko eventually signed to face was former UFC heavyweight title contender and M-1 Global debutant Jeff Monson. The fight was considered to be one of the worst of 2011, but Emelianenko took home a unanimous decision victory. Some angry fans speculated that the fight was rigged.
Emelianenko next signed to make his Dream debut against judoka Satoshi Ishii at Dream's 2011-2012 New Year Dynamite event. He put on a vintage performance, knocking Ishii out cold in the fight's first two minutes.
After the fight, Fedor rested amidst rumors of returning to M-1 and also in signing finally with the UFC. He stated in early 2012 that he wanted to "fight the best fighters" in the UFC.
Instead, Emelianenko next entered negotiations to return to M-1 Global to face UFC veteran Rolles Gracie. Instead he next signed to return to M-1 to face former UFC heavyweight title contender and M-1 Global debutant Pedro Rizzo in June 2012. Emelianenko knocked Rizzo out in the very first round in just over a minute, retiring afterwards.
Rizin after Retirement Edit
Over three years later in mid-2015 Emelianenko began discussing his return to mixed martial arts at the risky age of thirty-nine. He misled fans with statements about his intention to again sign with the UFC "to fight the best fighters" but instead in September 2015 Emelianenko announced that he had signed with former Pride president Sakakibara's new Japanese promotion for their December 31st, 2015 show. His opponent would predictably be kickboxer and complete MMA unknown Jaideep Singh.
Fedor - also predictably - made short work of Singh defeating him via a first round submission due to strikes with little effort.
Outside Rizin Edit
Amidst rumors that Fedor would sign with the UFC finally he signed to make his debut on the UFC's digital streaming service Fight Pass in a Russian promotion against UFC veteran Fabio Maldonado. Maldonado battered Fedor for much of the fight and then appeared to either run out of energy or hold back from finishing Emelianenko. After the bizarre fight ended Emelianenko was handed a very bizarre majority decision. The 'victory' was widely seen as controversial by MMA fans and analysts alike.
Regardless Emelianenko took some time off to study offers from the UFC and other promotions, namely the UFC and Rizin.
In November 2016 Emelianenko signed with the UFC's chief rival Bellator to make his debut in February 2017 against UFC veteran Matt Mitrione. Unfortunately Mitrione suffered several kidney stones passing and the fight was necessarily rescheduled..
..for an even bigger venue and spotlight.. the promotion's second-ever attempt at a pay-per-view event, in New York City's prestigious and historic Madison Square Garden. Mitrione and Emelianenko knocked each other down at the same moment, but Mitrione was quicker to pounce and finish Emelianenko via knockout.
Emelianenko next signed to fight former UFC heavyweight champion and Bellator newcomer Frank Mir in the quarterfinals of the Bellator 2018 heavyweight grand prix. The last man standing at the end of the aformentioned tournament would claim the prize of the too-long-vacant Bellator heavyweight title.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Levon Lagvilava - The fight was for Rings.
- Ricardo Arona vs. Fedor Emelianenko - The fight was in the first round of the Rings King of Kings 2000 tournament. Both fighters came in undefeated and it was Ricardo Arona's first loss.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Chris Haseman - The fight was to decide the winner of the RINGS Absolute Class Tournament, the last tournament ever held by RINGS.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Semmy Schilt - The fight was Fedor Emelianenko's Pride debut.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira 1 - The fight was for the Pride heavyweight championship with Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira defending. Nogueira was a heavy favorite coming into the fight. Many hadn't realized the potential that Emelianenko possessed at that time.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Kazuyuki Fujita - The fight was one of the few times that Emelianenko was visibly rocked, by a monstrous counter right hand from Kazuyuki Fujita.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Kevin Randleman - The fight was in the quarterfinals of the Pride 2004 Heavyweight Grand Prix. Although Emelianenko won by kimura submission, the fight featured one of the most dynamic slams in mixed martial arts history, when Randleman dumped Emelianenko on his head like a sack of potatoes, cracking two of his ribs.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira 2 - The fight was in the finals of the Pride 2004 heavyweight grand prix, but ended in a no-contest due to a cut to Emelianenko resulting from an accidental headbutt. The fight and the finals it concluded were rescheduled.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Mirko Filipovic - The fight was for the Pride heavyweight championship with Emelianenko defending.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Mark Hunt - The fight was the last in Pride for both men, and it was for the Pride heavyweight championship with Emelianenko defending.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Matt Lindland
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Hong Man Choi - The fight was Hong Man Choi's first loss, and only his second fight of his career.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Andrei Arlovski - The fight was for the WAMMA heavyweight title with Emelianenko defending.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Brett Rogers - The fight was Emelianenko's Strikeforce debut and his debut inside the MMA cage. Brett Rogers came into the fight undefeated.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Fabricio Werdum - The fight was Emelianenko's first decisive loss. The fight was a massive upset.
- Antonio Silva vs. Fedor Emelianenko - The fight was in the quarterfinals of the Strikeforce heavyweight tournament. After the bout, Emelianenko contemplated retirement.
- Dan Henderson vs. Fedor Emelianenko
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Jeff Monson - Some fans suspected that the fight had been rigged in the favor of Fedor, based on Jeff Monson's fight behavior.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Satoshi Ishii - The fight was the Dream debut of Emelianenko.
- Fedor Emelianenko vs. Pedro Rizzo - After the fight, Emelianenko was set to retire.
- Fabio Maldonado vs. Fedor Emelianenko