It wasn’t supposed to be this way. When Aleksander Emelianenko was announced opposite Paul Buentello on Affliction’s stellar inaugural fight card, fan’s rejoiced.
Aleksander had been pretty much M.I.A. for the better part of two years, save a few B-level events for M-1 and HCF. His brother Fedor was scheduled to headline the card and fans were sold the return of two Emelianenko’s for the price of one. People were obviously disappointed when Aleks was forced to withdraw from the fight due to Visa issues and Emelianenko was further humiliated with rumors that he had tested positive for Hepatitis B; a condition which would preclude him from fighting again in the U.S.
“I came late, couldn’t get my Visa in time and I was not allowed to fight,” Emelianenko told The Fight Network. “I’m healthy.”
Emelianenko has a wealth of talent. His brother Fedor has stated that Aleks is an even more naturally talented fighter than himself.
That’s high praise coming from the world’s consensus number one heavyweight.
If he really is healthy, then fans should expect to see him in with another big promotion soon. Aleks himself has stated that he’s open to fighting anywhere, including the UFC.
“Yes, I would fight in the UFC,” he said. “It makes no difference to me where I fight, or who I fight. I see myself fighting 10-15 years down the road”
For now he is scheduled to fight against Korean prospect Sang Soo Lee. on Nov. 21 at M-1 Challenge 9. Though Alex appears to be looking toward future showdowns with higher ranked opponents.
“All of my opponents were good,” he said. “But my most difficult fights lie ahead.”
Aleks also was quick to offer up his opinion on Randy Couture. Asked if Couture could beat his brother he offered the following:
“No, not a chance!”
Asked how he himself would do against the legendary American fighter, Emelianenko was confident.
“He is a very solid, experienced fighter… It would be an honor to fight him and I would definitely beat him.”
The fighting Emelianenko’s also have another member coming up, Fedor and Alek’s younger brother Ivan who is a middleweight. Apparently Ivan, who was a boxer is now training Sambo and MMA, wants to make a career of MMA.
“If he wants, he can be the best,” said Emelianenko.
If genetics have anything to do with it there can be no question.