Once hailed as the sport’s pound-for-pound best, Fedor Emelianenko has fallen somewhat out of relevancy in the eyes of many after turning in two consecutively uninspired performances which resulted in the first two legitimate losses of his career.
Dropping two straight contests to Fabricio Werdum and Antonio Silva, Emelianenko’s back is against the wall heading into this weekend’s bout against fellow Pride FC veteran Dan Henderson. Though many have questioned what’s left of Emelianenko’s drive and motivation, “The Last Emperor” recently spoke with MMAWeekly.com and explained that he is not only excited to face a decorated champion in Henderson, but also to reclaim championship gold in the heavyweight division.
“Of course, it would be a very important victory,” said Emelianenko of a win over Hendo. “Dan Henderson has been a fighter for a very long time and been a champion in many different organizations. And for me, it’s very important. It would mean a lot to me.”
Though some believe his desire to be counted amongst the best fighters on the planet has waned, Emelianenko told MMAWeekly that he’s still in this to prove that he’s the best.
“Of course, it’s important,” he said. “It’s definitely something that I’d like to achieve again. For me, what’s most important is to be a master in the sport and to be on top of my game.”
Emelianenko and Henderson will meet this Saturday night at the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois. Don’t forget to check back on FightLine.com for our live, ongoing coverage of the event.