Fedor Emelianenko to conclude legendary MMA career at Bellator

Russian heavyweight legend Fedor Emelianenko has signed a new multi-fight contract with Bellator and will end his career at the promotion following a “farewell tour” of fights.

“I am pleased that we were able to sign Fedor, the greatest heavyweight of all time, to a new contract extension,” Bellator president Scott Coker said in an official press release.

“He is someone that I consider a friend in this business and am even more pleased that he has decided to finish his storied career with Bellator.

“There are exciting matchups for him here in Bellator that I know will appeal to his fans from the past, as well as new fans from his recent run in the tournament. As his time in the sport winds down, I am happy to see him close out his career on his own terms.”

Emelianenko is coming off a loss in the final of Bellator’s heavyweight grand prix.

“The Last Emperor” earned a duo of knockout wins over Frank Mir and Chael Sonnen in the tournament before suffering a TKO loss to dual light heavyweight and heavyweight champion Ryan Bader inside 35 seconds.

“My strong friendship and respect for Scott Coker made reaching a contract extension a simple process,” Emelianenko said in the press release.

“Bellator is my home — I look forward to helping Bellator continue to grow and reach its full potential as the world’s top MMA promotion.”

The former Pride and WAMMA heavyweight champion currently holds a record of 38-6.

No opponents have been announced for the Russian as yet. However, a long-awaited bout with Josh Barnett could be in the offing, while Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and Wanderlei Silva – both last competed at heavyweight – could also be options.

Jake Hughes

Jake Hughes

Jake Hughes is an MMA writer who has covered the sport since 2013 for publications such as Vice Sports, Fightland, Sherdog and now Fighters Only, where he serves as freelance digital editor.