(Aleks’s sledge-hammer rears its head over the airspace of Tireland.)
When Aleksander Emelianenko was pulled from July’s Affliction: Banned card at the 11th hour, American MMA fans were robbed of seeing “The Grim Reaper” compete in the U.S. for the first time. Though rumors persisted that the CSAC blocked Aleks from fighting due to health concerns, he has always insisted that late paperwork was to blame, and that his health is good. Good enough to fight outside of the States, at least: M-1 has announced that Fedor’s younger brother will be headlining M-1 Challenge 9 against Sang Soo Lee, on November 21st at the Ice Palace in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Lee (9-4) is a Korean fighter who has fought under the SpiritMC, DEEP, MARS, and M-1 banners, and is on a three-fight win streak. His last match was a first-round triangle-choke submission of Roman Zentsov at M-1 Challenge Korea in August — and now Aleks is going in to avenge his Red Devil Sport Club homey’s loss. The Emelianenko/Lee match will be supported by fights between Team Korea and Team Russia Red Devil, and Team Russia Legion vs. Team Holland.
But before that, M-1 will make it’s first appearance on U.S. soil. Says M1MixFight.com:
On October 29th 2008, the M-1 Challenge will come to Kansas City, Missouri for the 8th installment of this new fight series. 3 time All American Wrestler of Missouri and UFC and IFL veteran Mike Whitehead (22-6) is slated to take part in the event as the superfight participant.
Whitehead had a 13-fight win streak snapped at Affliction: Banned when he dropped a decision to Renato Sobral. As for Aleksander Emelianenko, he expects to compete at Affliction’s January event, and may also “fight around Christmas-time in Japan.”