Image source: Fedor Emelianenko's Instagram (@fedoremelianenkoofficial)
The man, the myth, the Fedor returns to his old Pride stomping ground this weekend as he takes on fellow Pride legend Quinton “Rampage” Jackson.
Earlier this year, Fedor Emelianenko, signed a new three-fight contract with Bellator that was branded as the “retirement tour”. The idea behind the tour was to have Fedor return to some extremely memorable places to cap off his legendary MMA career and what better place to start than Japan.
The outing will be Fedor’s 25th professional bout in Japan meaning more than half of his 46-fight career has been contested in Japan, a country he has not competed in for eight years now. The choice of opponent is also ideal as “Rampage” has often discussed his joy of fighting in front of Japanese fans and his love for the Pride organisation. “Rampage” also has 19 bouts in front of a Japanese crowd.
Although the retirement tour sounds like a great way to cap off a legendary career, Fedor isn’t ready to close the door completely. Speaking to MMA Fighting via a translator, Fedor said that three fights and then retirement is the current plan, but he is going to see how he feels after the fights.
“That’s what we discussed and that’s what we agreed on but let’s see how I feel. Right now, the plan is laid out, it’s going to be three fights and it’s a retirement tour but when the tour is over let’s see how we feel, and we’ll go from there.”
Fedor went on to discuss the potential of keeping his unbeaten record in the Saitama Super Arena alive and entertaining in fans in one last farewell fight.
“Well it’s the largest arena I’ve fought in and I’ve fought all the best in that arena so of course it holds a special place and I’d like to win this time too.
I think I’ve already shown the fans everything there is for me to show; this will be more of a farewell fight. I would like to entertain them; I want them to be happy watching the fight and I would like to come back to Japan as a guest.”