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Fedor Has Officially Not Signed With the UFC, Will Face Werdum on June 26

(Werdum taking advantage of his only opportunity to try on Fedor’s belt.)

Today Strikeforce put to rest the rampant rumors that Fedor Emelianenko would be signing with the UFC with the announcement that "The Last Emperor" will face two-time Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion Fabricio "Vai Cavalo" Werdum in a headlining bout on the promotion’s Saturday, June 26 card.

The event, which will be co-promoted by M-1 Global will be featured on SHOWTIME. Strikeforce was hoping to have CBS showcase the bout, but the organization’s president Scott Coker mentioned last week that have not met with the network to discuss their plans moving forward since the post-fight brawl that took place during their last broadcast event last month.

Strikeforce is building the fight upon an almost non-existent back-story that revolves around Fedor wanting revenge for Werdum beating the Emelianenko’s younger brother, Aleksander, three-and-a-half years ago.

Why not just focus on the fight?

Personally, though I don’t see Werdum beating Fedor, I don’t think he’s as outmatched as most think he is. If you look at who he has lost against and who he has beaten over the span of his career, he definitely deserves to be in the top ten of heavyweight ranking lists.

I’m not exactly sure why the UFC let him go, considering he beat Brandon Vera and Gabriel Gonzaga in the Octagon and only lost to Andrei Arlovski by decision before getting knocked out by Junior Dos Santos, in what would be his last fight in the promotion. The rumor is that Zuffa wanted him to take a substantial pay cut, and when he refused, they gave Werdum his walking papers.

It’s sad when wins over Lil’ Emel, Gonzaga, Vera, Alistair Overeem and Roman Zentsov don’t equate to as much monetary respect as being an Internet back yard brawling can-crusher who was knocked out by a UFC cast-off.

Maybe this fact explains Fabricio’s expressed interest in fighting said meme-turned-MMA fighter.

(Props: World of MMA)

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Mr_Misanthropy- May 5, 2010 at 1:03 am
New Caption:

Verdum: "So it's made out of spray-painted foam rubber and vinyl?"

Vadim: "Yeah, go ahead and pick it up, it's basically like a movie prop, like the A-teams' van. Harharharharhar (jovial russian laughter)!"

Random Black Guy: "Damn, nawamsayin'?!"

David_Banner- May 4, 2010 at 7:30 pm
The UFC can't sit still, thats their problem. Theres always somebody new coming up and they totally believe in "Out with the old, in with the new". Theres always a guy losing one fight and their whole career gets called into question, the threat of getting stuck on a undercard for being a underperformer ect ect. The UFC lives and breaths hype. There's no rest, its them against the world..and most of their associates. But yeah, if you don't have a following in the UFC and lose a fight convincingly, you get cut. But, like Houston Alexander and or the can-crusher himself, Cheick "The Low-blow" Kongo, have people chanting your name and you've got a place in the UFC, that is, until you run from Kimbo Slice.

Honestly, theres no better MMA Org then the UFC and I love the UFC but the level of stress and vindictiveness within it seems unbearable.
fatbellyfrank- May 4, 2010 at 6:26 pm
Anyone who loves Ice Cream as much as Fedor has to be a good human
Mr_Misanthropy- May 4, 2010 at 6:08 pm
So there people who don't like Fedor. PPPfffftttt!
Goat- May 4, 2010 at 3:43 pm
The top mma websites, critics and fighters would all agree Fedor is the best HW in the world, maybe even the best fighter period. I think that any and all praise that Fedor generates is made knowing that the UFC has some solid HWs, and that despite the questions of how he would manage against Cain or Brock, his history of handling himself in difficult situations with difficult opponents will put him in a great position to do well against those UFC HWs. I think if we saw the lines for Carwin vs. Fedor tomorrow, they would definitely put Shane as the underdog. The same goes for Brock, Mir, Cain and JDS.

Bottom Line: Fedor is a beast, and while his competition hasn't been inside the octagon, it's been against a steady stream of Top 10-15 fighters. His record and brutal finishes help sustain his aura of greatness, and until he loses, it will stay that way.
ccman- May 4, 2010 at 2:47 pm
@ fedor relevant ban

So you are saying permanent ban?
Mr_Misanthropy- May 4, 2010 at 1:56 pm
I know he's no Dan Quinn, but Fedor is the man. The guy sits on the shelf in management-imposed early semi-retirement and comes out rusty and still vaporizes whoever they put in front of him. I wish the dude was fighting all the time as well, I think he would have just kept getting better and better. He really was at a peak in Pride before they started doing the circus acts with him, but even looking slower and sloppier in the cage these days he's still beating up dudes that are bigger than him. I don't know why people want to bust out the Hater-aid every time the guys name comes out, who in the sport has a better record than him? Nobody even comes close. Even if he quits fighting tomorrow he deserves all of the credit he has earned throughout his long career. Do I see people dissing Mohammed Ali or Jack Dempsey because they haven't been recently active against top competition? It's called a legacy. It seems like Mike Tyson gets more respect than Fedor around the interwebs sometimes.
Mr_Misanthropy- May 4, 2010 at 1:46 pm
It is still, even today, a rare occurrence to find somebody that can take Fedor the distance in a fight. Nobody's (yeah, I know, his last opponents really were almost nobodys (*sigh*)) done it in five years.
Stak40- May 4, 2010 at 1:31 pm

Your analysis is based off of him beating a lot of scrubs. Is he really all those things against top tier fighters?
SlapjawAckrite- May 4, 2010 at 1:11 pm

I know...original title of the article said this fight was for Strikeforce belt.
filly4585- May 4, 2010 at 12:51 pm
Fabricio bridges the gap between Mr.Peepers and the Rock.
Goat- May 4, 2010 at 12:49 pm
Dr Garbo - I think Fedor uses his inhumanely powerful hips to pull off a sub or create a scramble. Fedor is much quicker than most every heavyweight, and his speed can and does catch most fighters off-guard. He's tough as nails, has amazing striking and great take down defense.

I think he'd do fine against the UFC HW brass.
Dr Garbo- May 4, 2010 at 12:29 pm
It really is a shame that Fedor has not had the career that he should have had. With his abilities he COULD have been the biggest fighter in the world...I am honestly curios as to what happens when he fights top of the line wrestlers. His style is based around controlling BJJ fighter on the ground and overpowering high level strikers. Other than Coleman I can't recall him facing any great wrestlers...What happens when he is faced with a power double from the likes of Cain, Lesner, or even Carwin? Does he get up?
BoJimbo Spice- May 4, 2010 at 12:24 pm
LOL @ the wamma belt.
BossNasty- May 4, 2010 at 12:23 pm
Boo Boo on Fedor. You can only live off past wins for so long. It's obvious he doesn't care about the title of best PFP fighter if he did he would have made sure he was able to get in the ring with Couture, unless he plans on doing a Matt "The Fag" Hughes and waiting until Couture is 72 years old and then taking out the legend. What it boils down to is if Fedor doesn't care then why does everyone else?
6pakofdwarves- May 4, 2010 at 12:15 pm
M-1 plays ball like a boxing promoter does. They have a fairly hot commodity in Fedor and use him to get their cherry picked fights. Fedor is a terrible match up for poor Werdum. Werdum is a great fighter, but not really an elite fighter, sort of a step down from Nog with worse striking. Fedor wins in the first by hardball contract negotiation.
Stak40- May 4, 2010 at 11:59 am
I agree with Hate. I mean really until Fedor signs with the UFC and fights the "Whos, who of MMA," full time, who gives a shit about what he is doing. He is obviously a greater fighter and has beaten some of the best but that dont mean shit now. Its like going and playing Basketball in Europe opposed to the NBA. Nobody gives a shit if you were the MVP of the EBA and has brought 3 titles to Austria!
Viva Hate- May 4, 2010 at 11:51 am
Can we institute a Fedor/M-1 ban until he faces someone relevant?
Mike Russell- May 4, 2010 at 11:36 am
 @DCSG Kevin Thanks. I mistakenly said Strikeforce title in the headline instead of WAMMA, whose belt is in the photo. Fixed.
PERPATRAITOR- May 4, 2010 at 11:31 am
Werdum is good for sure. Fuck it though, I want to see cro cop fedor fight again lol!
Thatsabingo- May 4, 2010 at 11:20 am
I haven't been excited about a Fedor fight in a loooonnnnggg time.
ihateemo- May 4, 2010 at 11:17 am
If memory serves, Werdum was making about $100k per fight in the UFC. His win over Vera was arguably an early stoppage, the Arlovski fight was disastrously boring and getting smoked by a then-unknown probably indicated to the brass that he wasn't worth what they were paying.

Considering the fact that he showed up to fight dos Santos in the 250lb region and looked flabby and out of shape, I can't blame them.

He's definitely redeemed himself somewhat (he was about 20lbs lighter for the Kyle fight and his ADCC victory rose the value of his stock), but his last fight with Bigfoot was hardly a dominant performance. I haven't rewatched the fight, but at the time I was pretty sure Silva had won. If he only took a middling heavyweight to a decision I'm pretty confident that Fedor is going to clown him and do so badly.
Defender- May 4, 2010 at 11:15 am
This has been talked about since Fedor beat Rogers. It's funny how M1 holds out until they get exactly the fighter they want...after Alistair is lined up to fight the guy Fedor just beat.

The guy hand picks his opponents like each co-promotion is his personal buffet. Granted, Strikeforce doesn't have a huge roster...the idea of a Rogers getting a title shot is some really bad management from all involved.

Not that I believe Werdum will (but I do believe he can) beat Fedor...but I really feel that would be the final nail in the coffin for this floundering promotion if he does.
kmcgrath- May 4, 2010 at 11:13 am
@This1Way Werdum beat Overeem in Pride back in 2006. Overeem won the Strikeforce title in 2007 and is still the Strikeforce heavyweight champ.

The title in question is the WAMMA title, which is not solely tied to Strikeforce.
This1Way- May 4, 2010 at 10:55 am
@ SlapjawAckrite Fedor didn't, Wedurm did.