Fans are in for a treat when two all-time heavyweight greats, Fedor Emelianenko (36-5) and Frank Mir (18-11), collide inside of the building formerly known as the Rosemont Horizon this weekend, where they will continue the quarterfinal round of Bellator’s Heavyweight Grand Prix.
Despite being one of the greatest heavyweights the sport has ever seen, Fedor hasn’t been able to find much success when booked in America. Following a hot 4-0 start, Fedor has dropped four straight stateside, with all of those losses coming by way of finish. His upcoming opponent may have an explanation.
“His cage technique is not very good,” Mir explained to Ariel Helwani during the latest episode of The MMA Hour.
Fedor holds an unheard of record in this sport of 32-1 outside of America with every single one of those fights having taken place inside of a ring. His first three fights in America, where he would begin with a record of 3-0, also took place in a ring. That makes him 35-1, with one no contest due to an accidental headbutt in his second of three fights against ‘Minotauro’ Nogueira, in fights where he was surrounded by ropes. This means that Fedor is just 1-4 inside of a cage.
“The cage really hurts his style of fighting,” Mir continued. “Unless he’s made drastic improvements since his last time in the cage, he does a lot of things even amateur fighters know not to do.”
Helwani would immediately ask Fedor about Mir’s “cage” comment later on in the show to which the Russian legend would offer up the following response: “I don’t think the problems are connected with fighting in a ring or in a cage. I feel comfortable in a ring or in a cage.”
So, what do you guys think? Does the highly decorated submission master and top-notch color commentator have a point? Or is he just trying to get inside of Fedor’s head with their fight just days away? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below or get at us on social media @FightBooth.
Bellator 198 ‘Fedor vs. Mir’ airs live on the brand new Paramount Network this Saturday, April 28th, beginning at 9 p.m. ET