Inside the Venue: Ice Palace

By Brian Knapp Apr 14, 2011
A quick look inside the Ice Palace …

Location: St. Petersburg, Russia
Built: 1999
Seating Capacity: 12,300
Architect: LenNIIProekt Open Joint Stock Company

Four years ago on Thursday, the Ice Palace played host to Bodog Fight “Clash of the Nations,” as former Pride Fighting Championships heavyweight titleholder Fedor Emelianenko met 2000 Olympic silver medalist Matt Lindland in St. Petersburg, Russia. Two minutes and 58 seconds after it began, Lindland, an overblown middleweight, submitted to an armbar from the Russian. Their brief encounter was not without controversy. Early in the bout, Lindland, having already cut his favored foe, worked for a takedown, only to be stymied and ultimately reversed, as Emelianenko appeared to hook the top rope.

The multi-purpose sporting and entertainment complex can stage various sporting events -- figure skating, short-track skating, boxing, wrestling, basketball, volleyball and gymnastics, among others -- along with ballroom dancing, circuses and concerts. The Ice Palace opened in 1999 and is primarily used for hockey. It serves as the home arena for SKA St. Petersburg and hosted the International Ice Hockey Federation European Champions Cup in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008. In October, the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes visited the arena for an exhibition with SKA St. Petersburg. It was the first time since 1990 that an NHL team played the Russian franchise.

M-1 Global has promoted a number of MMA events at the Ice Palace. One April 28, the venue will host M-1 Challenge 25, as welterweight champion Shamil Zavurov will defend his crown against the only man to beat him -- Rashid Magomedov. The 26-year-old Magomedov won a split decision from Zavurov in November 2009. The show will also feature a light heavyweight title bout, as “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 8 finalist Vinny Magalhaes will take on Viktor Nemkov for the vacant 205-pound strap.
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