In April, Fedor Emelianenko will fight the former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir in the first round of the Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix. Sadly unless by some miracle Fedor can turn back the clock we are probably heading for another sad chapter in the decline of the once great Fedor Emelianenko.
In reality, Fedor has been in decline for years certainly from 2010 when Fabricio Werdum snapped his amazing winning streak dating back 10 years, but probably we could go back even further. Fedor lost two further fights to Antonio Silva and Dan Henderson, before dropping the level of opponent and winning three fights before retiring in 2012. Sadly like many before him, Fedor returned in 2015, winning two fights before suffering another loss, this time in Bellator to Matt Mitrione.
Like many, I hoped that would be the end, but the show goes on, and he finds himself part of the Bellator Grand Prix. Fedor still has the name, but in reality very little else, he can no longer compete at anywhere near the top of the sport he once dominated.
Over recent years Fedor has seen his record drop to 36-5 with one no contest, and at 41 it will drop further. As with BJ Penn and others, promoters have an obligation I feel, to stop using faded fighters, they won’t of course, but they should.
Fedor Emelianenko was the greatest fighter of his time, but that time has long since gone.