Posted On:6/21/2012 5:34pm
Style: Bits and pieces
Jun 21, 2012 - After playing coy about his future plans in the leadup to his M-1 Global fight, Fedor Emelianenko has made the decision to retire, according to multiple Russian news outlets.
In comments made after knocking out Pedro Rizzo, Emelianenko announced that at the age of 35, he will call a halt to a legendary mixed martial arts career.
"I think it is time I quit," Emelianenko said, according to the Russian news site Ria Novosti. "My family influenced my decision. My daughters are growing without me, that's why it's time to leave."
Emelianenko (34-4, 1 no contest) had previously voiced the possibility after recent fights, and prior to this one, said it would most likely be his last cage encounter. The evening gave off the vibe of a sendoff, with the sold-out crowd at the Ice Palace in St. Petersburg offering massive ovations at his entrance and introduction, and upon his knockout victory. After the fight, the Russian was mobbed by family and congratulated by Russian president Vladimir Putin, who was in attendance. According to one report, the fans, sensing it was indeed his last match, implored him to continue competing, chanting "Do not go!"
While Emelianenko has in recent years come to serve as a divisive figure of debate because of his continued refusal to accept a UFC contract and face some of the sport's best heavyweights, his resume still stands as one of the most impressive the sport has ever seen.
He boasts career wins over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Mirko Cro Cop when both were at the height of their careers, and he also authored a 28-fight unbeaten stretch, one of the longest such streaks in the sport's history.
Fighting as an undersized heavyweight at just 6-feet tall and 230 pounds, Emelianenko consistently defeated larger competition, using a seemingly unstoppable combination of hand speed, aggressiveness and ground savvy.
Despite the debate about him, among the long list of notable combat sports athletes who have called him the greatest or among the best ever include current UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos, current welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre, B.J. Penn, Randy Couture and boxer Mike Tyson.
In 2007, Emelianenko became the most sought-after free agent in the sport, but despite being courted by the UFC, he spurned them in order to co-promote events with his M-1 organization. In 2009, after two knockout wins in Affliction, he again became a free agent but once again looked elsewhere, signing with Strikeforce.
In his first fight in the promotion, he knocked out Brett Rogers, but the next time out, he was upset by Fabricio Werdum, marking his first defeat in nearly a decade. That was followed by consecutive losses to Antonio Silva and Dan Henderson. With three losses in a row, his Strikeforce career came to an end, and Emelianenko contemplated retirement, but fought on.
In his post-fight comments, he said he harbors no thoughts of avenging his previous defeats, and retires with a clear conscience. While he will continue to compete in combat sambo, he's done in MMA, leaving on the strength of a three-fight win streak, with his final one marking his 23rd career first-round stoppage victory.
I feel really sad about this, but it's the best move for him in my opinion.
Posted On:6/21/2012 10:40pm
Style: TKD, Arnis, Catch
Just read this too, after watching his fight. I think we all know that this is the best move for him. It's either retirement or fighting mid-tier heavyweights. I love Fedor, though. I still consider him one of the all time greats. I regret that I got into the sport too late to watch him fight in his prime. The first fight of his I watched was his fight against Werdum.
Lots of respect to him, though. Wish him luck in his post-fight life.
Posted On:6/22/2012 12:07am
I am decidedly mixed on this. I want to see more fights, preferably at a catchweight, but I'm glad he's getting out more or less intact.
Thanks for the memories.
Shime Waza Test Dummy
Posted On:6/22/2012 12:24am
Style: StrikeyGrappling & WW2-fu
Goodbye to a Great Champion.
"Judo is a study of techniques with which you may kill if you wish to kill, injure if you wish to injure, subdue if you wish to subdue, and, when attacked, defend yourself" - Jigoro Kano (1889)
***Was this quote "taken out of context"?***
"The judoist has no time to allow himself a margin for error, especially in a situation upon which his or another person's very life depends...."
~ The Secret of Judo (Jiichi Watanabe & Lindy Avakian), p.19
"Hope is not a method... nor is enthusiasm."
~ Brigadier General Gordon Toney
Posted On:6/22/2012 2:16am
Style: Muay Thai
Posted On:6/22/2012 2:54am
Style: Taekwondo, Judo, MMA
Posted On:6/22/2012 6:47am
Posted On:6/22/2012 7:14am
Style: belt and jacket wrestling
Amazing fighter. I hope to see him fight combat sambo one day, in person.
Sent from my PH44100 using Tapatalk 2
Posted On:6/22/2012 7:34am
Style: Stick, Taiji, combatives
Glad to see him go out with a win! Hes always been my favorite fighter, but lately his fights just cause me anxiety to watch.
Combatives training log.
Gezere: paraphrase from Bas Rutten, Never escalate the level of violence in fight you are losing. :D
His heart was visible, and the dismal sack that maketh excrement of what is eaten.
Posted On:6/22/2012 9:18am
Good for him. He has definitely supplied me with a ton of entertainment. I've always admired the way he fights more than any other fighter. He was so slick all around and I especially loved the way his takedowns fit seamlessly within the rest of his game and how he snuck them in so quick, hiding them in flurries of strikes.
He always fought with aggression and every technique carried bad intentions. I think the level of respect he received from the other fighters in Pride when he was in his prime spoke volumes about him. I remember Rampage, of all people, admitting that Fedor was the one fighter he and all the other fighters were afraid to fight.
Plus, he represented the sport well, didn't talk ****, and carried himself like a champion should.
Fedor, you will be missed. <sniffle>
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