Fedor Emelianenko's opponent for his Dec. 31 return fight is expected to be announced at a press conference in Japan on Thursday, however, sources with knowledge of the fight say the new Japanese promotion is targeting Indian-Japanese heavyweight kickboxer Jaideep Singh as his foe.
The 28-year-old Singh is 40-10 (1 NC) in kickboxing but just 1-0 in MMA. His lone MMA fight was in June 2013 when he defeated Alireza Tavak at Super Fight League 19. The 2009 K-1 World Grand Prix in Seoul champion hasn't won a kickboxing match since 2011.
The 39-year-old Emelianenko (34-4, 1 NC) recently ended his retirement to sign with former Pride boss Nobuyuki Sakakibara's new promotion, whose name has yet to be announced. One name that has been discussed is Samurai FC, but that has yet to be finalized. That announcement is also expected to come Thursday, along with several more details about the organization.
The promotion will hold three events in three days at the end of the year on Dec. 29, 30 and 31. The main event of the show on Dec. 29 is currently slated to be Shinya Aoki vs. Kazushi Sakuraba in a catchweight bout. All three events are expected to be held at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, with the hope that the Dec. 29 and 31 events will be televised locally on Fuji TV in Japan. The Emelianenko-Singh card will air via tape delay in the United States on Spike TV. The promotion is currently planning on only holding two-to-three mega events a year, and they could also feature kickboxing and grappling matches as well.