When Fedor Emelianenko announced his return to mixed martial arts, many hoped that the Russian heavyweight legend would end up fighting for the UFC. However, despite several encouraging signs, Fedor eventually signed with Japanese upstart promotion Rizin FF, headed by former Pride FC boss Nobuyuki Sakakibara.
During an impromptu periscope session with Russian sports outlet Championat, Fedor explained his reasons for not signing the “one-sided” contract with the UFC.
“I’m not ready to fight under the contract conditions that was offered by the UFC on the terms that they decided,” said Fedor. “Contract was just draconian and oppressive. I’m not ready to sign such an enslaving contract. First of all, they should show respect for the fighters — the kind of respect I receive in Japan”
Fedor is currently in Moscow following a month-long stay in the Netherlands for a specialized training camp. The 39-year-old trained with the likes of Vitaly Minakov, Kirill Sidelnikov, Vadim Nemkov, Valentin Moldovan, and Anatoly Tokov.
With less than two weeks remaining before his long awaited return, Fedor’s opponent has not been officially announced by the promotion. The announcement is expected to occur during a Friday press conference in Tokyo, Japan.