Fedor Emelianenko

Video: Jerry Millen Interviews Vadim Finkelchtein

In a three-part video series put out by M-1 Global (the first part is above), former PRIDE Fighting Championships executive and current M-1 Global USA Vice President Jerry Millen interviews Vadim Finkelchtein, the creator of the M-1 Challenge and the longtime manager of heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko.

During the interview, Finkelchtein touches on a number of things, including comments made by UFC President Dana White regarding him and his clients as well as the future of his Russian-based organization. The first part of the interview is above and the remaining two parts are available after the jump.

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CKA for November 28, 2008

Jorge Gurgel.  Photo property of the UFC.

Gurgel, Sokoudjou among recent UFC cuts

Jorge Gurgel and Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou are among the recent cuts from the UFC roster.  Both were involved in losses in their last fight within the octagon.

Gurgel never fails to give a wild performance, such as the one against Aaron Riley that garnered him Fight of the Night honors at UFC 91.  But more often than not, he has come out on the losing end, having lost three of his last 4 fights.  He has been widely criticized for not utilizing his BJJ Black Belt skills more and instead choosing to stand and trade with his opponents.  Gurgel will not be out of work long as he has already signed an exclusive contract with the Strikeforce promotion.  In the end, it would not surprise me if Zuffa didn’t help get him signed right away.  His time in the UFC was clearly up and yet he was a real favorite of Dana White’s.  A demotion to WEC would be seen as just that while also inadvertantly degrading the WEC’s lightweight class.

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M-1 Global, Fedor Challenge Brock Lesnar

Fedor Emelianenko


M-1’s Official Statement on Brock Lesnar’s victory

M-1 would like to congratulate Brock Lesnar on his UFC heavyweight title victory as well as acknowledge Randy Couture’s return to active competition after a layoff that lasted over a year.

Couture and WAMMA heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko had publicly acknowledged a desire to fight each other multiple times over the course of the past year. While M-1 and Fedor remain interested in a match against Couture, we would also like to publicly state for the record that we would welcome a superfight between Fedor and Lesnar that would be held as a co-promoted event between the UFC, M-1, and Affliction Entertainment.

We’ve invited the media to speak with us today to not only make it clear we would welcome a Fedor vs. Lesnar matchup, but to act in a preemptive fashion to address the possibility that UFC officials will try and position Lesnar as the number one heavyweight in the world, much like they have tried to use a marketing ploy to brand Anderson Silfva as the number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world.

In the past, UFC president Dana White and Zuffa, LLC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta have tried to claim that Fedor was “overrated” and that his “record was irrelevant.” They make these claims in spite of the fact that Fedor holds career victories over UFC champions past and present. While we have tremendous respect for the contributions Mr. Fertitta and Dana have made to this sport, we do not believe they are sincere in their statements.

It is the position of M-1 that the UFC has adopted an anti-Fedor policy because multiple attempts to sign him have not been fruitful. For a company that has tried to market itself as the number one promotion in the world, they are unable to accept the fact that the number one fighter in the world does not reside on its roster of contracted fighters.

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Affliction’s Day of Reckoning Shaping Up

Tickets go on sale tomorrow for Affliction Entertainment’s second PPV effort, Day of Reckoning.  The fight card will feature Fedor Emelianenko defending his WAMMA Heavyweight Championship against former UFC Heavyweight Champion, Andre “The Pitbull” Arlovski.  The event is set to take place on January 24, 2009 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. 

Main Card live on Showtime PPV
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Andrei Arlovski
Josh Barnett vs. TBA
Matt Lindland vs. Renato “Babalu” Sobral
Chris Horodecki vs. Dan Lauzon
Vitor Belfort vs. TBA

Undercard live on HDNet
Vladimir Matyushenko vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Paul Buentello vs. Kiril Sidelnikov
Brett Cooper vs TBA
Albert Rios vs Antonio Duarte
Mark Hominick vs LC Davis
Jay Hieron vs. Jason High

Finkelstein Releases Statement Regarding Dana White Comments


Vadim Finkelstein. From s00nertp on Flickr.

Vadim Finkelstein, the current president of M-1 Global and longtime manager of Fedor Emelianenko has released an official statement to the media regarding UFC President Dana White’s recent comments stating that “the gates are open for Emelianenko to come to the UFC”:

M-1 Global president Vadim Finkelstein comments another attack of UFC’s Dana White on Fedor Emelianenko.

Dana says UFC’s doors are wide open. Maybe they are. But these doors also shut tightly once the fighter signs with the organization. Randy Couture came back to the UFC and what now? Instead of fighting the best in the promotion he has to fight a young upstart with 2-1 prorecord. Couture might not survive all the three contractual fights. I’m afraid that’s being made in order to finish the star which is Randy and not let him fight Fedor.

I said it many times – we are ready to make this clash happen in any shape of joint event. This bout is the most anticipated event in the world of MMA. But Fedor will not sign to the enslaving terms of the UFC contract while UFC won’t agree to make compromise.

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Affliction Announces Fedor-Arlovski for Jan. 24

Although an official announcement or press release has yet to be made to the media, Affliction Entertaiment today quietly confirmed its already previously rumored main event for their re-scheduled “Day of Reckoning” show on January 24: perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko and former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski will clash in a battle for the WAMMA heavyweight title in California.

The event’s official website now reflects the new main event and Affliction has put out a promotional video as well.

Emelianenko and Arlovski were originally supposed to meet on the event’s previously scheduled date of October 11 but Emelianenko was scratched from the event due to a lingering hand injury. Former UFC and PRIDE standout Josh Barnett was matched up against Arlovski instead but was passed on this time around due to rumored communication issues with Affliction management.

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Trump, M-1 Revisit “Fighting Fedor”


Fedor Emelianenko. Photo courtesy of Affliction Entertainment.

Today in New York City, Donald Trump and executives from Affliction Entertainment and M-1 Global held a press conference officially announcing the production of a new MMA-related reality show titled “Fighting Fedor”, which will pit 16 heavyweight fighters from around the world against each other for a shot at fighting former PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko.

It will be the first time that Affliction and M-1 have partnered together since co-promoting “Banned on July 19. The concept was originally announced by M-1 Global earlier this year, but very little details were confirmed until this afternoon. Everyone involved, including Vadim Finkelstein, who currently serves as M-1 Global’s active president and Emelianenko’s longtime manager, feels that the project will be nothing short of a success.

“There are many international fighters that [people in] the United States don’t know about,” Finkelstein said at today’s press conference. “They include fighters from different countries and fighters that have very interesting and wonderful styles and are very exciting. We’re now opening the doors [for] the next generation of fighters. We anticipate that this project will be a great success.”

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Report: Fedor-Arlovski Set for Affliction II


Andrei Arlovski. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko and former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski will reportedly clash in a bout for the WAMMA heavyweight title that will headline Affliction’s rescheduled “Day of Reckoning” show, which is currently slated for January 24 according to MMARated.com.

Affliction Entertainment Vice President Tom Atencio confirmed the news with the website earlier today. No other details were given except that the card will be comprised strictly of mixed martial arts and not a limited amount of boxing matches as previously expected. An official announcement regarding the event is expected next week.

Emelianenko and Arlovski were originally supposed to meet on the event’s previously scheduled date of October 11 but Emelianenko was scratched from the event due to a lingering hand injury. Former UFC and PRIDE standout Josh Barnett was matched up against Arlovski instead but was passed on this time around due to rumored communication issues with Affliction management.

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Report: Fedor-Barnett, Mousasi-Belfort at Affliction II


Gegard Mousasi. Photo courtesy of Fighting and Entertainment Group.

Newly crowned DREAM middleweight champion Gegard Mousasi has told Fighters Only Magazine that Affliction Entertainment is planning on matching him up against Vitor Belfort and Fedor Emelianenko against Josh Barnett at the organization’s next scheduled show in January.

I’m going to train with Fedor in preparation for Affliction in January,” Mousasi said in a recent interview with the magazine. “I think it is Fedor against Josh Barnett and they want me to fight Vitor Belfort.”

Mousasi is currently a member of the Red Devil Fight Club and is also a client of Vadim Finkelstein, the same manager of Emelianenko. He defeated Melvin Manhoef and Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza at DREAM.6 last weekend to win the promotion’s inaugural middleweight grand prix and be crowned their first middleweight champion.

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Reger’s Rant Sept 29, 2008

John has been on me in the past to write some opinion pieces and he’s right.  So once a week, I’ll try to comment on some of the happenings in the world of Mixed Martial Arts as I see them in my warped eyes.

Affliction-EliteXC co-promotion

News last week that Affliction was loaning Andrei Arlovski and Roy Nelson to EliteXC to compete on the CBS October 4 Primetime show was really the best news to come out of either promotion in quite a while.  Many feel the only way for either group to survive is to join forces.  To me, it’s not even about competing with the UFC, it’s more a case of survival.  By combining the MMA promotional experience of EliteXC with the roster and deep pockets of Affliction, they could carve out a very nice segment for themselves.  Affliction, specifically Tom Atencio and Michael Cohen, have made it clear that this is a one time co-promotion at this point, which is the wise thing to do until they see how it works out.  Conversely, EliteXC’s Jared Shaw of course is making veiled threats at the UFC, but that’s nothing new for $kala.  Ultimately though, this could be a huge positive for both promotions.

Where is Fedor fighting next?

So will we next see Fedor fighting in Affliction, or in a thus unannounced New year’s Eve show in Japan?  Upon hearing Fedor promise to fight in Japan on NYE during the Dream 6 show, Jerry Millen of Fedor’s M-1 Global team issued a statement saying that Fedor is under contract to fight for Affliction on their January show that is being co-promoted with boxing’s Golden Boy Promotions.  Affliction has made similar statements.  Just last year Monte Cox, fresh off the creation of M-1 Global featuring Fedor, stated Emelianenko would not be fighting on NYE and instead would compete on a January card.  A few weeks later, Fedor announces his intention to compete on the inaugural Yarennoka show.  This is becoming eerily similar.  From all indications, Fedor’s Affliction contract is exclusive to bouts taking place in the US.  But since the fight would occur in Japan, they might be powerless to prevent it. 

 

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