‘I feel good’
Fedor Emelianenko suffered what may be the most devastating loss of his storied career Saturday night. Ryan Bader only needed one punch and 35 seconds to put away “The Last Emperor” and take the Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix and the championship that goes with it.
With talk of retirement in the build-up to the fight and with many fans echoing that sentiment after seeing the outcome of the fight, Fedor is keeping things positive. In an Instagram post on Sunday, Fedor gave followers an update on his health status but not his career status.
“After the fight, I feel good, the dissection over the eye is not deep, yesterday I had several stitches,” Emelianenko wrote on Instagram (translated by MMAJunkie). “I think it will heal in a couple of weeks. I want to say thanks to everyone who helped me get ready, who came to the fight, and who got up early to watch the match. Thank you all for your support and your prayers. All the will of God.”
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После боя чувствую себя хорошо, рассечение над глазом не глубокое, вчера мне наложили несколько швов. Думаю, через пару недель все заживет. Хочу сказать спасибо всем, кто помогал мне готовиться, кто приехал на бой, и кто встал рано утром посмотреть поединок. Благодарю всех за поддержку и ваши молитвы. На все воля Божья.
‘Done it all’
Meanwhile, Bellator president Scott Coker gave his thoughts on whether Fedor should retire and he was entirely deferential to the heavyweight all-time great.
“That’s really up to him,” Coker said at last night’s post-fight press conference (transcribed by MMAJunkie). “That’s really up to Fedor. I think that we had a relationship that lasted for many years, and he fought for me back in Strikeforce. And Fedor, he doesn’t have to fight again. He’s already done it all. He’s already the greatest heavyweight of all time. He’s had such a great run. But, really, it’s going to be up to him whether he decides to really put it to rest.”
Coker also shared that Emelianenko’s contract with Bellator is now complete. The mystique that Fedor brought with him to Bellator is greatly diminished after such a decisive loss. There are fights in Bellator that could be appealing, but the days of Fedor fighting at a high level appear to be over.
-Scott Coker was open to the idea of Ryan Bader continuing to defend both of his Bellator championships as long as it doesn’t hold up a division too much.
-Ryan Bader told reporters at the post-fight press conference that he knew that the left hook that put Fedor out would be there for him and he was intending to use it. “I saw that punch was going to do it. You can’t see his right hand because he throws from his hip. He’s very hard to see, he throws hard. But in doing so, you leave yourself exposed. And we felt that he was going to respect my wrestling a lot, and I could put one up top.”
-Aaron Pico said the following regarding taking a step down in competition in his next Bellator fight: “Do we take lesser opponents? Okay, give me a lesser opponent. There’s going to be a hefty hospital bill because I will really f*cking hurt somebody bad. That’s for me personally, I will hurt somebody that’s the same record as me. I will literally hurt them.”
-Kevin Belingon vs. Bibiano Fernandes for the ONE bantamweight championship has been added to the ONE event from Tokyo, Japan on March 31.