Fedor Emelianenko reportedly faces UFC-vet Fabio Maldonado in next bout on June 17 in Russia

By Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

Fedor Emeliankenko

Fedor Emelianenko has his next fight set, and it comes against recently released UFC vet Fabio Maldonado on June 17 in Russia.

The bout will take place under the “Fight Nights” banner in Emelianenko’s home country, according to a report from Globo in Brazil.

“The Last Emperor” returned to action in December after three years out for the new Rizin Fighting Federation organization, defeating Jaideep Singh on their New Year’s Eve event. He’s now won four straight fights in a row after a three fight losing streak in 2010 and 2011.

As for Maldonado, his 11-fight UFC run came to an end following a loss to Corey Anderson last November, his third defeat in a four fight stretch. The Brazilian was in a number of entertaining scraps inside the Octagon, giving him longevity for a time, but his run ended with an overall 5-6 mark in the organization.

The June 17 event will take place in St. Petersburg. There’s no word on any potential broadcast availability in North America.

Penick’s Analysis: It’s a more sensible fight than was Jaideep Singh, but it’s the type of opponent we’ll be seeing Emelianenko fight for the foreseeable future should he continue on in Russia and Asia. It’s a good opportunity for Maldonado, and an upset win could potentially bring him back to the UFC, but it’s probably the highest profile opponent he’ll have available to him outside of the UFC.

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