(Vadim’s revenge on Dana: Selling bootleg UFC shirts.)
Fedor Emelianenko‘s manager Vadim Finkelchtein did an interview recently with Championat.com about the fighting future of his fighter whose career has hit a roadblock following his third straight loss two weeks ago to Dan Henderson. During the Q&A the Dana White’s favorite crazy Russian revealed that “The Last Emperor” will fight in the fall in Russia on the next M-1 Global show, possibly against fellow slumping former PRIDE standout Kevin Randleman, and that the event will likely be shown on Showtime.
Check out the full translation of what Vadim had to say below:
Did the decision to continue his MMA career largely belong to Fedor, or was it due to his contractual obligations?
A bit of everything. Of course, alone in this question was a personal desire to continue for Fedor. Contracts are of secondary importance. If Fedor decided to leave, he could not interfere with any contract … Fedor listened to what friends, fighters and fans were saying and made a decision. Emelianenko is currently a very high demand athlete. We have consulted with him and decided that you can not go that way. Fedor is healthy and full of energy and he is ready to continue fighting. He is 34. This is the peak age for heavyweights. Dan Henderson continues to compete in the ring at 41 and win. Emelianenko could serve another five years at a high level. This is in fact only the beginning. More injuries he does not have, so to leave now would be wrong.
When will be the return of Fedor? Is it feasible that Emelianenko will enter the ring in Russia?
Yes, we want to organize the fight Fedor in Russia. Work has already begun in this direction. If everything will develop successfully, in the fall we organize a show in Moscow or St. Petersburg and the main event will feature Fedor.
This fight will be held at the show M-1 Global, without any co-promotion?
Absolutely true. We will arrange a fight on our own. Now the market has by and large no one with whom to work. Strikeforce slowly but surely bent under the influence of the new owners from Zuffa. They started firing fighters as well as several other changes – all because of Dana White. He has no interest in running the company, but he creates conditions so that it soon cease to exist. In my opinion, he is very good at it. We’re going to go our own way, developing our own direction. Showtime has met with us. Americans are ready to support our initiative and to support Russia’s fighter, Fedor.
Who are the fighters will be treated as an opponent Fedor?
There are a lot of potential opponents for him. Personally, I’d like to see him face one of the greatest fighters of the best times from PRIDE. I hope that it is an interesting and competitive opponent, such as Kevin Randleman. In any case, we’ll choose a worthy and respected fighter in the world.
American TV networks would certainly interested in having Fedor return to the U.S. to fight with a top-level fighter after one or two wins.
Exactly. That’s what we all are expecting. I hope that in addition to the fight in Russia we will be able to negotiate for Fedor to fight on New Year’s night in Japan. If all goes well, in 2012 we’ll be back in the U.S. All these ideas are being developed, but ideally we would like things to work exactly according to this plan.
What is currently the situation with the contract with Showtime and has there been a change in the agreement?
With Showtime we originally had agreed to broadcast on the 3 +1 scheme. The contract could undergo adjustments in the event that Fedor would lose two fights in a row. Fedor lost, and now the contract is suspended. This is a normal working process. Logically, the TV people will change the conditions in some of the contract. But our cooperation on this will not stop. Showtime is interested in working with us and we are with them. It is interesting to work with him. As a show of good faith, we have decided to allow Showtime to broadcast Fedor’s fight in Russia. This is a large and very expensive project, which should bring our relationship to a new level.
The battle at home, according to many fans, this is a big plus for Fedor, not only because it will be supported by his home fans, but also in familiar conditions for a fighter without the long flights, acclimatization and other negative factors .
I absolutely agree with that. In many ways, this is why we decided to arrange the next fight with Fedor in Russia. He does not need to recuperate from his last fight, so it will have no additional workload due to which his body will be in order. Fedor will have a couple of tune-up fights again and get back to his winning ways before going back to the States to return the debts. I’m sure it’s Fedor strength. Need to start small and gradually build up speed.
Do you think enough just to change the conditions of the organization fighting? But what about the methods and format of training, do not you think that this issue needs overall adjustments?
Overall, we will change nothing. More time should be given to diversity in preparation for the fight. To travel to the famous schools of different fighters for sparring and sharing experiences may alter his style. Dan Henderson offered Fedor some assistance. So what the choice is we will see. We just need to put a lot of effort into practice. A soldier must develop if he ceases to progress, then all we can say is his song is sung. The same can be said for coaches. MMA progresses, so along with them to progress all the action.
Many experts are convinced that Emelianenko is necessary to change coaches. In particular the brother of Fedor, Alexander had some unflattering things to say about his trainers – Vladimir Voronov and Alexander Michkova.
I do not know. That’s a question I have not yet raised. In fact, it’s difficult to comment on this point because I myself am not a master of sport in one form or another martial arts to unambiguously assess the level of the coaching staff. In their working process, I try not to interfere. The only thing I can suggest something to the fan’s point of view without going into details. But one thing is clear: something must be changed.
Vadim, you as a manager and close friend just Fedor does not seem that the belief in some extent interfere with Fedor?
I do not think so. Faith in God, in contrast, gives him the strength, discipline. Knowing Fedor, I can say that with the coming into believing he was better. Fedor problem, perhaps in a slightly different – it is a very correct person. For example, when Fedor is fasting in preparation for fights, he loses a certain amount of useful items. To compensate for the lack of these substances, there are many different legal pharmaceutical drugs he could take, but Fedor refuses to take them. The result is that in the fight his body was not in the best condition. But then you look at a guy like Dan Henderson, all right, who doesn’t have that problem only for the simple reason that he takes drugs to compensate for his deficiencies.
What are the plans Emelianenko in the near future?
Fedor will take a month off for vacation. He needs to stay with his family. His wife had a difficult birth. Now, thank God, all is well and his daughter was born healthy. In September I plan to bring Fedor to the Netherlands. I think that it is necessary to pass a full recovery period in this country. There are all conditions for him to spend time with and to lay the foundation for the future.