Fedor Emelianenko (32-2 in MMA) will make his long-anticipated return this weekend, facing a tough challenge in the Brazilian KO artist Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva. The fight will mark the opening of Strikeforce’s 8-man Heavyweight Grand Prix, taking place at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
The fight against Bigfoot will be Fedor’s third under the Strikeforce banner, and his first since the shocking defeat against Fabricio Werdum last year. If victorious, Emelianenko will meet either Werdum or the reigning Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Alistair Overeem, who will square off against each other on April 9th.
But before Fedor steps inside the Strikeforce cage, he took time off his busy schedule to answer on LowKick.com Community questions. Just recently, Fedor Emelianenko was voted “Fighter of the Decade” with 46% percent of the votes, which shows the appreciation LowKick.com users have for “The Last Emperor’s” achievements.
pound4pound: You have been fighting for over a decade and went undefeated until the fight against Fabricio Werdum. Who was your biggest challenge before losing to Werdum?
I had some very interesting match-ups throughout my career. But I find the fights against Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic and Antonio Nogueira in Pride as the toughest ones.
wartaal677: Dear Fedor, what do you think about Alistair Overeem and that he is always challenging you and thinks that he is better then you?
I think Alistair Overeem is a great fighter and a serious athlete. He’s very strong physically. And his victory in the K-1 World Grand Prix last year was very impressive to watch.
UrHype: Do you think the respect that was synonymous with MMA is a dying belief? Your real fans will always respect what you’ve done for the sport. You’ll always be remembered as a humble respectful fighter.
Thanks a lot for the kind words. I think that respect between fighters depends on fighters themselves. It depends on a lot of fighter’s character and upbringing, which decides whether he wants to respect his opponent or not.
Arthur_Knoqout: Sambo is one of the most effective combat systems out there. It stemmed out of Judo and BJJ stemmed out of Judo as well. Doesn’t it make sense to cross train with a BJJ specialist?
In my opinion SAMBO is the most effective form of Martial Arts. As for my upcoming fight against Antonio Silva, I prepared with the Dutch kickboxing coach Peter Teijsse.
jasons: Fedor, do you find an advantage in your training methods over the more complicated exercises used in the West?
I use what’s best for me. Every fighter has his own training style and methods in a preparation process for the fight.
Kon: Lately, a lot of fighters tested positive for steroids. What do you think about the usage of steroids, and do you think it’s a widespread phenomenon in MMA?
I never used steroids in my career. There are some fighters who use them to improve their speed and power. I disagree with that kind of approach. I think that everything has to be fair, and all fighters should be “clean”. So every fighter could have an equal chance to get a victory.
Footlancer: What would you say to today’s generation who are growing up with ubiquitous negative influences and role models in their lives? What do you think about MMA’s current influence on young adults, and what would you change about it? Is this one of the reasons you choose not to compete in the UFC?
I would advice young generation to get involved in sports, instead of wasting their time by following bad examples.
Photos: Esther Lin