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[MMA Fans only] An Exclusive Interview With Fedor Emelianenko

Discussion in 'Other Sports' started by TeamUSA, Jan 24, 2008.

  1. TeamUSA

    TeamUSA Member

    Aug 2, 2006
    Likes Received:


    What if Magic, in his prime, took on Michael Jordan one-on-one? Could the 1972 Miami Dolphins hang with this years’ New England Patriots? Could Hank Aaron have hit Pedro Martinez at his most dominating? Most dream match-ups only play out in barroom debates. But MMA fans could very well see a battle between two of the top heavyweights in the sport’s short history, Fedor Emelianenko and Randy Couture–as long as the suits can get out of the way.

    The chances of M-1 Global, Emelianenko’s fight league, and the UFC (currently in the midst of suing Couture for breach of contract) setting up a joint promotion seems unlikely. But if it came down to buzz rather than lawyers, the fight would be a lock. A video report featuring Emelianenko and Couture facing off while filming a commercial for Affliction last Friday attracted more than 50,000 views on YouTube in its first two days alone.

    We sat down with Emelianenko in downtown Los Angeles recently to find out about the status of the potential showdown with Couture, how he found his way to the ring in the first place, and who would win a cage match between George Dubya and his counterpart in Fedor’s native Russia Vladimir Putin.

    The full interview and more pics after the jump.

    Complex: You shot a commercial for Affliction clothing last Friday with Randy Couture. Did you two discuss a possible fight between takes?
    Fedor Emelianenko: We just took photos and did the commercial. We talked about different stuff - about our families, we invited each other to our homes. Randy talked about how he visited Russia to train one time. That’s about it.

    C: Randy’s made it clear that you’re the one person left that he wants to fight. If it never happened, at the end of your career would you feel like you missed out on something special?
    Fedor Emelianenko: If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen. That’s it. But I think it’s going to take place because I think that everyone wants it.

    C: Who do you think wants it more: You, Randy or the fans?
    Fedor Emelianenko: The fans want it more.

    C: Do you hear it directly from fans?
    Fedor Emelianenko: I don’t hear it in person from the fans, but I know it from the questions that the media ask me and from the Internet, so I feel they want me to fight Randy.

    C: What would a fight like that mean to you? What would you gain from it?
    Fedor Emelianenko: If I win, I would be considered one of the strongest fighters ever.

    C: Beside Couture, what other heavyweights you’d like to meet in the ring?
    Fedor Emelianenko: (laughs) I don’t know who else would agree to fight me.

    C: Would you ever consider dropping down to light heavyweight in order to find a good fight?
    Fedor Emelianenko: I would never consider that because I feel comfortable where I am right now. Also, I’d have to diet a lot, and I don’t like that. (laughs)

    C: On New Year’s Eve you fought Hong-Man Choi, one of the largest competitors (7′ 2″ and 350 lbs.) in MMA. What adjustments did you have to make to fight someone of his size?
    Fedor Emelianenko: I didn’t have any adjustments or anything. Me and my trainer set up a strategy when we saw his fights on television. Then me and my team trained together, and they would try and copy some of his movements and actions.

    C: What draws you to this? What got you involved in fighting?
    Fedor Emelianenko: When I was little, my mom said, ‘Why don’t you and try (martial arts),’ and I did and I liked it. I fanatically started training and really got into it. It grew and grew each year. That’s how I got into sambo and judo first and then I decided to do MMA after that.

    C: What made that decision for you, to go from practicing strict martial arts to actually getting in the ring?
    Fedor Emelianenko: I needed money. (laughs)

    C: If not MMA, where would you be?
    Fedor Emelianenko: Probably I would be still doing sambo and judo. Maybe training younger fighters.

    C: Vladimir Putin shows up to your fights on occasion, and the idea of our president showing up to support a fighter seems strange here in America. Have you talked with Putin?
    Fedor Emelianenko: Putin once visited me after a fight. Our president is very athletic. He develops and tried to give more attention to sports in Russia right now, which is nice. We did talk.

    C: So, would he take out President Bush in a fight?
    Fedor Emelianenko: Our president is a black belt in judo and he is also a master in sambo. So if they did that … (laughs) But I think that our leaders should decide their issues in a different way.

    C: In between fights, what else are you doing besides preparing for that next match?
    Fedor Emelianenko: I have two sambo tournaments including the President’s Championship. The rest of the time, I’m just planning to be with family.

    –Interview by Robert Spuhler
  2. DaDream

    DaDream Member

    Aug 17, 2006
    Likes Received:
    I would love to see this fight , but Fedor would prolly whip up on Randy. Is M-1 global owned by Mark Cuban?
  3. Nashvegas

    Nashvegas Contributing Member

    Jan 16, 2001
    Likes Received:
    Mitchell Maxwell owns M-1 global.

    Mark Cuban owns HDNet Fights.

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