Fedor Emelianenko was on the verge of helping the mixed martial arts community resolve one of the greatest debates of our sport: Is he the greatest fighter of all time?
When Emelianenko announced his return to the sport of mixed martial arts, fans were excited for the possibility of seeing “The Last Emperor” step inside the octagon. Fedor’s reign of terror in PRIDE and RINGS was unprecedented at the time with dominant wins over the likes of Mirko Cro Cop and “Big Nog”. However, fans began to question his legacy when he started to pick his own fights once PRIDE went out of business.
While Fedor picked fights that suited him with names that weren’t elite, men like Cain Velasquez, Junior dos Santos and Brock Lesnar were tearing through the heavyweight division putting Emelianenko to shame.
Sadly, the possibility of Fedor testing his “Greatest of all Time” moniker will not come to fruition as he signed with an upstart Japanese promotion instead of the UFC.
Bellator’s Tito Ortiz was recently asked whether or not he thought Fedor was THE greatest of all time and he didn’t hold back from giving his true opinion.
“Well, one of the best of all time? Of course. You know, there’s ‘one of’. I mean ‘one of’ is how many? Ten? I mean, you put the number on that and that’s the number,” Ortiz told Submission Radio.
“But the best of all time? No way. Pound for pound, the best of all time? No. He fought a lot of guys that were great at their time and his time, but you gotta go for all time, for everybody he’s competed against. You know, in Japan they did give him a lot of ‘gimme fights’. Of course it’s Japan and they want to do spectacle fights, where it’s a completely one sided match.”
Ortiz continued to give his pick for greatest of all time, and it’s hard to debate seeing his dominance over the rest of the light heavyweight division. “Well if Jon Jones can get his shit together, I think it’d be Jon Jones for sure. As a fighter, that guy is amazing. I mean he has to be an adult and stop being a kid.”
Who do you think is the greatest of all time? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!