Emelianenko. The last emperor returns
The legendary Russian fighter, a multiple world champion in MMA (Mixed Martial Arts - mixed martial arts), the president of the MMA Alliance of Russia Fedor Emelyanenko decided to resume his sports career. This was announced on July 14 on the official website of the Union of MMA. “For each athlete it is very important to be able to do your favorite thing - to give oneself in training, to perform at competitions, defending the honor of the motherland,” Fedor said in a statement.
Since 2012, Emelianenko worked as an adviser to the Minister of Sport of the Russian Federation. During this time he managed to work on the development of martial arts, he learned about various problems of sports and tried to solve them to the best of his abilities. But now the athlete feels that it is time to return to the ring. According to Fedor Emelianenko, for the last three years he has been keeping fit, but this level is not enough to go into battle.Therefore, he recently began intensive training. Emelianenko gathered a team of versatile coaches and athletes who will help him in the training process.
Fights by the rules and without
The return of Emelianenko, who already seemed accustomed to a strict suit and the role of an official, came as a surprise to everyone. However, the surprise was his departure in June 2012 after the victory over the Brazilian Pedro Rizu. Fans of mixed martial arts could not believe that they would no longer see the greatest heavyweight in the history of MMA in the ring. And then the Last Emperor returns. Fedor received this nickname in Japan, where he began his professional career and achieved success and world fame. By the way, in Japan, Emelianenko is no less popular than in Russia, almost everyone knows his name there.
The first professional organization of MMA, with which Fedor Emelianenko collaborated, was the Japanese company RINGS. Under her auspices, he spent 11 fights, twice won the champion title and suffered only one defeat, and quite unfair, in 2000 in a battle against the Japanese Tsuyoshi Kosaki. Fedor received a cut after the forbidden strike with an elbow of a Japanese fighter (although mixed martial arts are conventionally called “fighting without rules”,the rules are still there) and, at the request of the doctors, were forced to stop the fight. And Kosaka, instead of the disqualification, was the winner, since the fight was held in the framework of the tournament and someone had to go on. Emelyanenko could not continue to participate in the tournament, and the Japanese was recognized as the winner. Subsequently, Fedor took revenge on Kosaki, but already during performances in another series of battles - Pride. That controversial defeat did not prevent Emelianenko from becoming the RINGS champion.
In 2001 his champion fight against Bobby Hoffman was to take place, but the American refused, citing an injury, and Emelianenko without a fight received the title of RINGS heavyweight champion. The second champion title in the absolute weight category Fedor won, defeating Australian Chris Heisman at the last tournament of the organization RINGS, held in February 2002. After that, RINGS ceased to exist, and Emelianenko moved to the largest at the time MMA organization in the world - Pride.
Pride - it sounds proud
Having won two victories in the new series, Fedor received the right to fight for the title of champion with the master of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Antonio Rodrigue Nogueira, who wore the champion belt Pride since 2001.By the way, it was Antonio Nogueira who won the RINGS champion title at the tournament where Emelianenko received a cut from Tsuyoshi Kosaki. Before the fight with the Russian Nogueira won 13 victories in a row and was considered an invincible fighter because of his outstanding ability to withstand the hardest blows. Despite this, Fyodor knocked down Nogueira and dominated throughout the battle. As a result, by a unanimous decision, our fighter was declared the winner and became the Pride heavyweight champion.
In the future, Emelianenko met twice with Nogueira in the ring: the first fight was declared invalid due to the cut at Fedor after the forbidden collision of fighters with heads, and in the second, thanks to the shock tactics, the Russian won and secured the champion title. In addition, in the Pride tournaments, Emelianenko defeated such strong fighters as Mark Coleman, Kevin "Monster" Randleman, as well as the Brazilian giant Zuluzinho and Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic - the offender of his younger brother Alexander, who was also engaged in mixed martial arts.
In total, Fedor Emelyanenko won 14 victories under the auspices of Pride and did not give up his champion title to anyone until the end of the organization’s existence, thus remaining the last champion in the history of Pride,for which he received the nickname The Last Emperor.
The king is losing titles ...
After the bankruptcy of Pride, Emelyanenko won several more victories in tournaments of other promotions, and in 2008 he signed a contract with the American organization Strikeforce, for the period of cooperation with which three consecutive defeats of Fyodor fell, which later became the reason for ending his career.
The first fight in Strikeforce he won, and in the second he suffered the first undeniable defeat in his career, which was a shock for the fighter and for all fans of the MMA. Brazilian Fabricio Werdum unexpectedly defeated Emelianenko with a choke and deprived the Russian of undisputed leadership in the ratings of the best fighters. This loss, apparently, undermined Emelianenko’s confidence in his invincibility, and he suffered two more defeats: in January 2011 from the Brazilian fighter António Silva, nicknamed Bigfoot, and in July of the same year, from American Dan Henderson.
After that, Fedor's victories over Jeffrey "The Snowman" by Monson in Moscow and over the young Satoshi Ishii in Japan. These rivals can hardly be attributed to the strongest, and it was clear that it would not be possible to return to the previous level at Emelianenko.In June 2012, after the battle with Pedro Rizu, the legendary Russian fighter announced his retirement in mixed martial arts. Virtually all of Fedor’s rivals, including the victors, consider the Russian the greatest fighter of all time. Emelianenko remained undefeated for 10 years - this is a unique achievement for MMA fighters.
Everything ever ends, and age takes its toll. No one thought that after a long break, Emelianenko, 38, would resume his sports career. What influenced his decision? Perhaps Fedor lacks adrenaline in his current activities, in his interviews he said that politics is not exactly his business. But it seems to me that there are other reasons. After his departure, a Russian fighter never appeared, whose performances were followed by the whole country, at least approaching the scale of Emelianenko. This order of things hardly suits the president of the MMA Union of Russia (who is Emelianenko), and he wants to draw more attention to mixed martial arts.
Many say that the peak of the career of heavyweights comes closer to 40 years, but it happens in different ways.Someone becomes a so-called freak, and someone with age adds and goes to a higher level. Let's see what happens with our great fighter. In any case, Fedor Emelyanenko will forever remain a legend of mixed martial arts.
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