The emperor of MMA Fedor Emelianenko will be returning to the cage to face Dan Henderson on a Strikeforce fight card, scheduled for July 30. The former Strikeforce heavyweight champion hinted at retirement after being dominated by Antonio Silva, earlier in the year.
Now, the Russian MMA fighter is close to finalizing a deal to face another former Pride champion. According to ESPN , the details of the fight are still being worked out, but both MMA fighters have already indicated they are interested and the contract should be finalized by the end of the week.
Henderson is the current Strikeforce light-heavyweight champion and it’s interesting he would be willing to go up in weight class to face an MMA legend like Fedor. While Fedor has lost his last two MMA fights, it would be foolish to think his career is done. Getting caught in a submission by a world-class Brazilian Jiu Jitsu specialist is something that can happen to anyone in MMA, and Silva did have a significant size advantage over Fedor.
Against Henderson, Fedor will have the size advantage in the cage since the MMA fight between the two will be in the heavyweight division. Fedor is also six years younger than Henderson, another advantage he will have in the fight. Emelianenko is the more technical striker, and Henderson’s best option would be to take him to the ground.
Antonio Silva was very successful on the ground against Fedor thanks to his incredible BJJ skills and the significant size advantage he had over Fedor. Silva was able to completely shut Fedor down on the ground, punishing him with punches the entire time. Henderson will have a harder time trying to do the same to Fedor, and he’ll probably get submitted if he stays on the ground long enough.
For Fedor, a MMA fight against Henderson will be more mental than physical. After being undefeated in MMA for almost 10 years, two consecutive losses will definitely mess with a fighter’s head, especially if the fighter only had one loss prior to that. If Fedor can shrug his losses off and focus all his attention on Henderson, he should be able to secure the victory.