Fedor Emelianenko. Photo by Tracy Lee/CombatLifestyle.com.
Perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko has confirmed that he has agreed to face close friend and former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett at Affliction’s third show on August 1 in Anaheim, California.
In a recent interview with M-1Global.com, Emelianenko stated that he worked closely with all sides to make the fight happen and that even though that Barnett is a friend of his, he is still more than willing to take him on.
“I am always 100% involved in the negotiations especially with regards to the Barnett fight,” Emelianenko said. “We discussed this fight with the whole team (trainers, coaches, management), so as a team we agreed to a fight with Barnett. Besides Josh’s qualities as a fighter, he is also one of the best representatives for MMA in the U.S.A. We often had drinks after our fights in PRIDE and Affliction so I do consider him a friend.”
Josh Barnett. Photos by Gene Blevins/Golden Boy Promotions.
A report from M-1 Global’s Russian language website stated earlier today that perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko would be facing top contender and former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett at Affliction’s third show this summer.
It’s a matchup years in the making as Barnett remains one of the only top heavyweights that Emelianenko has yet to face. However Affliction VP Tom Atencio says that the fight hasn’t been finalized as of yet:
The Russian version of the M-1 Global website announced today that Fedor Emelianenko and Josh Barnett will finally meet at Affliction 3 in early August. However, when FanHouse contacted Affliction Entertainment VP, Tom Atencio, on Monday, he said that the organization’s third event is not a done deal.
“I haven’t finalized it yet,” Atencio said. “You know me, I like to get everything finalized before making an announcement.”
If the fight were to happen, rumor has it that it would take place in Japan as part of Affliction’s first foray overseas. Atencio was a guest at the latest edition of the M-1 Challenge last week and was said to be working on details regarding the show, which would reportedly be a co-promoted event involving a number of organizations. Affliction, M-1, DREAM, and Strikeforce are among the possible participants.
Fedor Emelianenko. Photo by Tracy Lee/CombatLifestyle.com.
Quick results for Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” show last night are below. Fedor Emelianenko scored a first-round knockout of former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski to retain his WAMMA heavyweight belt in the main event. More coverage to come.
Brett Cooper def. Patrick Speight - TKO (Strikes)
Albert Rios def. Antonio Duarte - Unanimous Decision
L.C. Davis def. Bao Quach - Unanimous Decision
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira def. Vladimir Matyushenko - KO (Knee)
Dan Lauzon def. Bobby Green - Submission (Rear-Naked Choke)
Paul Buentello def. Kirill Sidelnikov - TKO (Doctor Stoppage)
Renato Sobral def. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou - Submission
Vitor Belfort def. Matt Lindland - KO (Punches)
Josh Barnett def. Gilbert Yvel - Submission (Strikes)
Fedor Emelianenko def. Andrei Arlovski - KO (Punch)
Andrei Arlovski. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Now that perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko has returned to fighting viable competition, he will face his biggest test in over three years in the form of a newly-confident and conditioned Andrei Arlovski at Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” event this Saturday night.
Critics continually slammed Emelianenko for his choice of opponents after his hard-fought decision win over Mirko Filipovic in August 2005, but the Russian silenced them with a 36-second destruction of Tim Sylvia, a man that has twice beaten Arlovski, this past July. However in a rare instance, it’s Arlovski’s own trainers that are questioning the fan-favorite in the weeks leading up to his toughest challenge to date.
Arlovski has been spending the majority of his training camp learning how to box under the tutelage of Freddie Roach, who has trained champion boxers such as Manny Pacquiao, Bernard Hopkins, and Oscar De La Hoya among others, and his usual coaches, such as jiu-jitsu specialist Dino Costeas, have been left with a limited amount of time to work with their client.
In the above video courtesy of Showtime Sports, former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett and PRIDE Fighting Championships veteran Gilbert Yvel discuss their upcoming heavyweight bout, which will take place at Affliction Entertainment’s “Day of Reckoning show on January 24 in Anaheim, California.
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
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.
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.
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.
Fedor Emelianenko. Photo courtesy of Affliction Entertainment.
Perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko will reportedly return to action at Affliction Entertainment’s second show, which has now been moved to January 2009 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California according to Mike Chiappetta of NBCSports.com.
Chiappetta confirmed Emelianenko’s participation with Affliction COO Michael Cohen, who stated that he has been confirmed as participating on the show and that an opponent for him is still being decided due to the possibility of the previously planned Andrei Arlovski vs. Josh Barnett showdown being broken up.
“It [Fedor’s opponent] is to be determined,” Cohen said in the report. “We are considering changing the combatants. We have not finalized that at this time. That is as a result of the issues to be revealed at the announcement.”
The announcement Cohen refers to will reportedly be made at a planned press conference at the Trump Tower in Manhattan within the next two weeks. According to Cohen, the revelation will be “groundbreaking”.
Brett Cooper. Photo courtesy of the International Fight League.
A welterweight bout between IFL veteran Brett Cooper and undefeated prospect Patrick Speight will reportedly finalize Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” card, which will take place on October 11th at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of UNLV according to a report by MMA News.
Affliction VP Tom Atencio was said to have confirmed Cooper vs. Speight as the final bout to be signed for the event yesterday. Both fighters were originally scheduled to be part of Affliction’s “Banned” show on July 19 but were removed from the card due to unknown reasons.