Video: Did Fedor Emelianenko ‘for sure’ retire as the MMA heavyweight GOAT?
The remarkable career of Fedor Emelianenko came to an end this past Saturday at Bellator 290, where the former Pride legend was TKO’d in Round 1 by heavyweight champion Ryan Bader in his retirement fight.
At 46, Emelianenko may have hung up his gloves later than he should’ve, but there’s no denying his significance to MMA. And Emelianenko certainly has a strong case to be the greatest heavyweight of all time.
An entire generation may not be aware, but Emelianenko was the pound-for-pound king for a lengthy period of time in the 2000s. While never competed in the UFC, he started his career 31-1-1 with wins over former and eventual UFC heavyweight champions in Andrei Arlovski, Mark Coleman, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Kevin Randleman, and Tim Sylvia. It’s why Bellator president Scott Coker heaped so much praise on Emelianenko during Bellator 290 fight week.
UFC president Dana White, on the other hand, held it against Emelianenko that he never “tested himself” officially in the UFC – even though he owns wins over a bunch of UFC fighters.
The question is: Is he the greatest MMA heavyweight of all time? This week’s “Spinning Back Clique” panel of Nolan King, Danny Segura, Brian “Goze” Garcia, and host “Gorgeous” George Garcia are split, with former UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic also getting some love.
Check out their discussion in the video above, and don’t miss this week’s full episode below.
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for Bellator 290.