The next leg of Bellator’s World Heavyweight Grand Prix will be decided in back-to-back days.
A semifinal tournament bout pitting Fedor Emelianenko against Chael Sonnen has been scheduled for Oct. 13 at the Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, N.Y. The matchup takes place a day after the other half of the bracket, Ryan Bader vs. Matt Mitrione, goes down on Oct. 12 at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn.
MMA Fighting confirmed the booking Thursday following an initial report by Newsday.
Emelianenko (37-5, 1 NC), a legendary former Pride FC heavyweight champion, has won six of his past seven fights. He scored a 48-second knockout victory over ex-UFC titleholder Frank Mir in April at Bellator 198 to advance past the grand prix quarter-final.
In total, the 41-year-old Russian is widely considered to be one of the greatest heavyweights to ever compete, and holds victories over notable names Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (x2), Andrei Arlovski, Tim Sylvia, Mark Hunt, and Mirko Cro Cop, among others.
After competing mostly at middleweight and light heavyweight throughout his career, Sonnen (31-15-1) made his heavyweight debut in the opening round of the tournament in January and defeated Quinton Jackson via unanimous decision.
A former three-time UFC title contender, the 41-year-old “American Gangster” also picked up a recent decision win in Bellator over longtime rival Wanderlei Silva in June 2017, giving him back-to-back wins for first time since 2012.
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