1. Fedor Emilianenko is considered by some hardcore fans to be the greatest heavyweight, maybe the greatest fighter of all time. His time in Pride overseas was filled with wins over Cro Cop, Big Nog, and more recognizable titanic names. It was also filled with freakshow fights against opponents who had no business in an MMA ring *cough* Zulu *cough*.
There is no denying he is an amazing athlete, but maybe not the greatest ever, okay maybe he is. The reason he should come back is to give the fans what we all want – to see him in the Octagon. He has reached Randy Couture status in that he can fight in main events without it being a title fight, and still draw a crowd.
Fedor’s run in the United States wasn’t exactly spectacular. I mean c’mon he beat Brett Rogers, Andrei Arlovski, and Tim Sylvia. Yes, they are legitimate threats, but not the best his division has to offer. The only real part of this US run that leaves a bad taste in your mouth as a fan are the three losses in a row which sent him back overseas, and away from the United States. Fedor has a lot to gain by returning. Money, respect, and a fan’s dream of him stepping foot in the Octagon.
2. Igor Vovchanchyn, please come back to MMA. Igor was tenacious, fun to watch, and had bad intentions with everything he threw. He had good submissions, good striking, and heart. Vovchanchyn was one of my favorite fighters in Pride and could easily step in to the Octagon and make a solid showing.
3. This is a selfish one. Oleg Taktarov is one of the few early UFC fighters I think could still compete, and at age 45 he could still give the young guns a run for their money. Unlikely as it may be it would be a treat to see him come back for one more fight.
4. Bas Rutten is one of the most recognizable and legendary MMA fighters of all time. His energetic instructional material, the phrase “Liver shot”, and wild stories of bar and street brawls are still talked about on forums by both old and new fans today. Bas is in movies, on television, and commentating ringside popular sporting events. With his star power, eternally impeccable cardio, and undying will to win it would be a thrill to see him give it one more go.
Who would you like to see come back for one more?