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Emelianenko Pegs Japanese Judoka Satoshi Ishii As “Serious Opponent”

The once-heralded Fedor Emelianenko will continue on his march off the big stage, taking on Japanese Olympic-level Judoka Satoshi Ishii in the main event of DREAM’s annual New Year’s Eve show. The Last Emperor spoke with Russian media (props to MMAMania for the transcription) recently about his opponent, who holds a 4-1-1 record in mixed martial arts.

“I consider Ishii to be a serious opponent; he’s a very strong guy and great wrestler,” said Emelianenko. “Plus it’s clear that he is able to utilize his best characteristics in the fight. I will have to adapt, I’ll have to see how Ishii will be moving around the ring during the fight, what will he offer me, and what will I be able to showcase myself. It will all depend on the situation in the ring.”

After turning the MMA world on its head by not only losing one bout, but three straight – and one to a light heavyweight – Emelianenko finally picked up a win, taking a decision over fellow aging veteran Jeff Monson in his native Russia this past November.

DREAM’s Genki Desu Ka!! New Year’s show will take place at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan and you can catch the entire nine-hour run of the event on HDNET at 10:00 pm PST on December 30.