Fedor Emelianenko was known as the the greatest fighter in the world from about 2003 to 2009. He was seen as an unbeatable force that had a strange and emotionless approach to the fight game and was never intimidated. He was the original pioneer of Russian Sambo in MMA and that is one of the many reasons that he was referred to as “The Last Emperor.”
Fedor Emelianenko went into dangerous areas with opponents that nobody expected. He stood with Mirko Cro Cop and went to the ground with Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. He was the king of beating opponents at their own game. He was once suplexed onto the back of his head and neck by Kevin Randleman and it did not even phase him. Emelianenko was able to roll with it and put Randleman in a Kimura seconds later. He walked around at around 220 lbs and fought at heavyweight. In reality, Fedor had the frame of light heavyweight (some might even say middleweight), but he showed that he was “badass” enough to step in the ring with giants like Hong Man Choi and Tim Sylvia. He went against the odds and came out on top every time for years.
It wasn’t until his fight with Fabricio Werdum that Emelianenko was seen as human. Fedor‘s only loss before that was due to a technicality. Unfortunately, this loss turned into a three-fight skid as Fedor was also defeated brutally by Bigfoot Silva and Dan Henderson. It was sad to see the decline of the greatest heavyweight of all time, but it showed that even the best can be beaten. Anderson Silva was knocked out by Chris Weidman, Chuck Liddell was taken out by Rampage, Frankie Edgar beat B.J. Penn. To retire as an undefeated champion is not easy in MMA. Chins of fighters fade with time, as does athleticism, speed and strength.