Fedor Emelianenko Not Retiring, Will Return in Fall Bout, Says M-1 Global

Fedor EmelianenkoFedor Emelianenko won't be retiring any time soon, his management team announced via a press release on Monday.

Despite his recent TKO loss to Dan Henderson and subsequent release from Strikeforce, Emelianenko will continue on with his fighting career with a bout in the coming months "likely slated to take place in Russia," according to a release sent out by M-1 Global.

"We consulted with Fedor and it was decided that he should not leave the sport in this way. His friends and past opponents support Fedor in continuing his career and he agreed," M-1 Global president Vadim Finkelstein said in the release. "We want to organize a fight for Fedor in Russia and have already begun working in this direction. If everything goes as planned, we will produce a card in Moscow or St. Petersburg sometime in the fall with Fedor as the main event."

No opponent or exact date has been named as of yet, but Finkelstein also said that M-1 was "working with our Japanese contacts" to put together a New Year's Eve event in Japan that Emelianenko would fight in.

The New Year's Eve fight used to be a staple of Emelianenko's fighting career in Japan, though he hasn't competed in one since his submission win over Hong Man Choi in 2007.

If everything goes according to plan for M-1 and it does indeed schedule Fedor for a fall fight in Russia and a New Year's Eve fight in Japan, that would bring him to a total of four fights in 2011, the most since he fought five times for the Pride organization in 2004.

But, according to M-1 Global, the plan doesn't stop there.

"If all is successful, in 2012 we'll be back in the U.S.," Finkelstein said. "All these ideas are being developed right now and we want to work exactly according to this plan."

Emelianenko spent the last three years of his career fighting in the U.S., first for the short-lived Affliction promotion and then for Strikeforce. After losing three in a row in Strikeforce, he was released by the organization's parent company, which only increased speculation that the Russian heavyweight might decide to call it quits.

According to the M-1 Global release, Emelianenko will apparently look to revive his career outside the U.S., with an eye toward returning some time in 2012. Exactly who he'll face in this career revival tour, and when, remains unclear.

For now, the news out of M-1 Global tells us only one thing: Fedor will fight on.

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