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Fedor Continues to Waste Our Time

Fedor Emelianenko Zuluzinho PRIDE MMA
(Emelianenko vs. Zuluzinho: Are you not entertained?)

For the last five years, Fedor Emelianenko has traditionally booked a fight on New Year’s Eve — always in Japan, usually against someone that has no business being in the ring with him. And despite a hand injury sustained in his Affliction: Banned bout against Tim Sylvia, the WAMMA heavyweight champ plans on keeping the streak alive. “I think definitely by New Year’s Eve I’ll be ready to go,” he recently told And could he switch things up by fighting in the U.S. against someone competitive? Like, for example, the winner of “Day of Reckoning”‘s Arlovski/Barnett scrap? Not a chance, bro:

Early speculation centered on a rematch of Emelianenko’s tremendous points win in 2005 over Mirko Filipovic. However, a representative for the No. 1-ranked heavyweight said it’s doubtful the fight would take place at this time. In a bout intended for Japanese fight fans, Emelianenko will likely meet a “judo legend or sumo wrestler.”

My first thought is: Wow, does this suck for Affliction. They’re staking their fortune to their heavyweight division, but if Fedor and his championship belt won’t be available again until Spring ’09, all they can offer is a few interesting (though ultimately meaningless) exhibitions. And with Emelianenko’s right hand as dodgy as it is, “Spring ’09″ is only a rough estimate; an injury sustained on New Year’s Eve could delay his return to Affliction even further. (Regarding the hand, Emelianenko said: “It just seems the hand doesn’t really sustain the strength of the strike. So from time to time I’m going to have certain injuries as a result of that.”)

Of course my second thought is: Still with the goddamned freaks? Beating up a 90-year-old judoka or Emmanuel Yarborough interests you more than fighting another top ten heavyweight?

And speaking of Fedor destroying cans in totally meaningless fights, Fighting Fedor — the reality show in which MMA hopefuls compete for the chance to get armbarred in less than a minute by The Last Emperor — is in production and will purportedly launch later this year. Look, I’m not calling Fedor a farce, I’m just saying that occasionally he acts in a way that could be described as farce-like.


HOLY CRAP! Fedor to Fight Hong Man Choi on New Year’s Eve


The rumors are true — Fedor Emelianenko will be fighting in Japan on New Year’s Eve, according to an announcement on Greg Savage’s Savage Radio Show. And now for the truly bizarre details…

— The fight will not be M-1 Global’s first event. Instead, the event is being organized by a Japanese outfit called Hustle Pro Wrestling. It looks like Fedor’s already taking advantage of the wiggle-room in his M-1 contract.

— His opponent will be Hong Man Choi. Choi is a 7’2″, 352-pound behemoth, who, according to MMA Junkie, “suffers from a rare disease that causes him to continue growing throughout his life.” Which must be really frustrating during weigh-ins.

— Choi built up a 12-3 record in the K-1 kickboxing league, but has only one MMA fight to his credit, a 16-second TKO victory over Bobby Ologun, who weighed nearly 150 pounds less than him.

— Choi was supposed to be Brock Lesnar’s first MMA opponent, at the K-1 Dynamite!! USA show in June, but the California State Athletic Commission wouldn’t clear him to fight, reportedly because of a benign tumor on his pituitary gland. Lesnar went on to cream replacement Min Soo Kim in 69 seconds, and we’re left to dream of what could have been…