Fedor Emelianenko is, without question, the greatest fighter to never step inside the UFC’s octagon, and when “The Last Emperor” announced that he would be hanging up the gloves in 2012, many assumed that he was truly done competing and that we would never see him compete in the UFC against the world’s best heavyweights.
In the middle of last month, it was announced that Fedor would be returning to MMA after a three-year hiatus, but, he didn’t commit to any organization. Many believed at the time, and still believe, that he’ll end up going to Bellator because he has been seen at a few of their events, and because he has a history with Bellator CEO Scott Coker. However, Fedor signing with Bellator isn’t a guarantee, as he admitted in a recent Q&A session that he’s currently negotiating with the UFC.
“Now this is being negotiated, in particular with the UFC, as well as some other promotions. I think it will soon be finally determined. As for the opponent, I would say that desire must comply opportunities. I would like to face the strongest fighters in the world — UFC champion Fabricio Werdum. Given that over three years, I did not fight during the first fight I would like to get involved, check for myself.”
For those who don’t know, Fedor fought the current UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum in Strikeforce back in June of 2010, and lost via submission in the very first round. It was Fedor’s first loss in nearly ten years, as his most recent loss up to that point had come in December of 2000, when he lost to Tsuyoshi Kosaka.
As you would expect, the UFC isn’t the only MMA organization bidding for Fedor’s services, as many North American and Japanese promotions are trying to sign Fedor as well.
There has been some talk of doing a Fedor vs. Cain Velasquez if Fedor ends up signing with the UFC. Some have suggested that the fight between the two should take place in December on the undercard of the Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor pay-per-view at AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas, if the UFC is able to make that happen.
Andrei Arlovski, who fought and lost to Fedor back in 2009, has expressed interest in having a rematch with “The Last Emperor,” saying that Fedor is the man he wants to take on next. Of course, Arlovski is now scheduled to fight Frank Mir, and the belief is that if Arlovski wins, he’ll get the next shot at the UFC heavyweight title. However, if the UFC sings Fedor, the two of them can have a number one contender fight.
[Image via Showtime]