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Fedor Emelianenko Likely to Fight for Dream on New Year's Eve; Affliction Is Screwed

Fedor Emelianenko attended today's Dream.6 event in Japan and addressed the crowd during the intermission, and he suggested that he'll be back in Japan to fight on New Year's Eve for the sixth straight year.

That would be terrible news for Affliction, which has said it will have Fedor -- who is widely regarded as the best heavyweight in mixed martial arts -- in its January show in Southern California.

It should be noted that Fedor was speaking in Russian, it was translated to the crowd into Japanese, and I'm basing this post on the words of the HDNet translator who translated from Japanese into English. So it's possible something got lost here. But all indications were that as Fedor finished talking to the crowd, the fans were under the impression that they'll be seeing him on New Year's Eve.

It's not clear who Fedor's opponent would be. The best fight would be Fedor vs. the winner of the Dream.6 heavyweight clash between Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic and Alistair Overeem. But Fedor doesn't always fight the toughest competition, and at one point Fedor mentioned the name of Japanese judo gold medalist Satoshi Ishii, who called Fedor out after winning the gold medal in Beijing. To the Japanese fans, Fedor vs. Ishii would probably be a bigger fight than Fedor vs. Cro Cop or Overeem.

That's too bad, because Ishii would have essentially no chance of beating Fedor in MMA. Fedor is great, but he needs to consistently fight great opponents, and in recent years he hasn't done that.

But in any event, it now appears likely that Fedor will fight for Dream on New Year's Eve, and not for Affliction in January. So where does Affliction go from here?

UPDATE: Well, Fedor can't fight the Cro Cop-Overeem winner because there is no Cro Cop-Overeem winner. Their fight ended in a no contest. It's not clear what that means for Fedor.