Fedor Emelianenko rolled back the years to stop fellow heavyweight legend Frank Mir inside the opening minute of their bout at the Allstate Arena in Chicago. A victor in six of his last seven bouts, the resurgent Red Devil Sport Club lynchpin will meet Chael Sonnen in the tournament semis later this year.
The action started hot early, with Mir nearly immediately tagging and rocking Emelianenko. Sonnen entered the cage for a faceoff with Emelianenko following the bout. Before the fight, Emelianenko said that 38-year-old rival Frank Mir is the top athlete and one of the best fighters in the world.
Fedor will now progress to the semi-finals of the grand-prix, where he'll go up against Chael Sonnen.
This win bounces Emelianenko back from his Bellator debut - a first-round TKO loss to Matt Mitrione back in June. The victor would move on to the semi-finals of the Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix. But Emelianenko recovered took down Mir, who quickly brought the fight back to the feet.
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The Saturday fight came a few days after Emelianenko was questioned by the Federal Bureau of Investigation over what The Telegraph reported was the Russian MMA fighter's collaboration with Affliction Entertainment.
"I think the only thing I hate more than being right here in Chicago is being in here with you", Sonnen told Emelianenko. Fedor earned his first knockout victory since a 2012 stoppage over Pedro Rizzo and his first victory under the Bellator banner.
According to the Telegraph's Gareth A. Davies, the heavyweight legend was approached by the Federal Bureau of Investigation during his stay in Chicago ahead of a date with Frank Mir at Saturday's Bellator 198. "I assure you, the next time I am, it will not be for long".