It seems “The Last Emperor” has his next fight booked.
M-1 Global Director of Operations Evgeni Kogan announced Friday that Fedor Emelianenko will return to the ring on June 21 at the Ice Palace in St. Petersburg, Russia. Kogan also teased that Emelianenko’s opponent would be announced at a later time.
While Kogan did not release specifics regarding the June 21 event, it is expected to be held under the M-1 banner. First, however, the Russian promotion will hold M-1 Challenge 32 on May 16 at the Crocus Expo in Moscow. While a main event has yet to be officially announced, that event will feature a lightweight title bout between Daniel Weichel and Yuri Ivlev as well as an appearance from Aleksander Emelianenko against a to-be-named foe.
The elder Emelianenko earned a pair of wins to close out last year after suffering an unprecedented three consecutive losses. Previously regarded as the world’s top heavyweight, Emelianenko, 35, was finished by Fabricio Werdum, Antonio Silva and Dan Henderson in the Strikeforce cage before receiving his promotional release.
Following those defeats, Emelianenko responded with a unanimous decision victory over former UFC title challenger Jeff Monson this past November. Most recently, the Russian earned a first-round knockout over Olympic judo gold medalist Satoshi Ishii at Dream's New Year's Eve show in Saitama, Japan.