Why Fedor Emelianenko is the MMA’s Greatest but not BEST

Hey Fight Squad whats up?

Welcome to todays Fightcast where we’ll not discuss general but combat news, but explain why, in my opinion, Fedor Emelianenko is  MMA’s greatest of all time. 

Fedor Emelianenko returns to the sport this Saturday, when he fights Matt Mitrione in Bellator.

The MMA promotion released a very funny promo video that had to do with Fedor’s  «Glorious Sweater of Absolute Victory» !

For those who dont know, Fedor’s legendary sweater first appeared in a press conference before his fight with  Arlovski in Affliction, 8 years ago. He was standing next to suited up Oscar De La Hoya and Tito Ortiz and stole the scene with his extreme…casualness. Then he knocked Arlovski off his socks and a legend was born.

He wore it again before the Brett Rogers fight and knocked him out too.

Then it was retired somewhere and Fedor started loosing. He even said in an interview with  Ariel Helwani that he doesn’t know where it is.

But a couple of months back, while he was signing the contract to fight Mitrione in Bellator, he wore it again! And the legend leaves on,especially if he knocks him out too.


Now, in another video from Bellator we see former UFC superchamp Georges St Pierre actually kneeling in respect in front of Fedor. Yeah, GSP is always super polite and down to earth, but he wouldn’t have done that for anyone else.

So, i ‘ll explain here why i consider Fedor to be the Greatest of all time (GOAT).

First of all let me make a distinction.

I think the titles Greatest and Best are too totaly different things.

“Best” is used for a comparison in Skill and only at present. The Best, is someone who can beat anyone else in this moment and only in this moment.

Great is a comparison in achievement and legacy and not in skill and it covers the whole history of the sport. It’s a different comparison than skill cause, in a young sport like MMA, every generation is expected to be much better than the last, since the improvement is massive.

I ‘d say Daniel Cormier is a better fighter than Chuck Liddel was, but he is not as great (yet). Stipe Miocic is a better fighter than Nogueira but he is not as great  (yet).

So i m not saying Fedor is skillwise the best MMA fighter ever, i m saying he is the greatest. And you dont even have to be a fan of his to understand it.

Every great fighter has a peak, which usually is when he wins the best title in the world. A Bellator title is not the highest peak, a UFC is.

Than as he defends that belt he maintains himself at that peak. And defending is much harder than winning so the more he defends the GREATER the peak.

I know some people slight Fedor cause he never fought in the UFC but when he was at his best, PRIDE had the much better heavyweight division. UFC had Randy, Silvia and Arlovski. Fedor beat the last two  when they were still very relevant.Arlovski was #2 in the world when he got KOed in Affliction and Silvia was #5.

So, Fedor was defeating  the best heavyweights in the world and he did for at least 8 years. Thats his peak.

I m counting from his win against Heath Herring (where Fedor was the outsider) in 2002 up to his loss from  Fabricio Werdum in 2010.

So Fedor’s Peak lasted 8 years 22 wins. 

Anderson Silva’s peak, started when he beat Chris Leben in 2006 untill his loss to Weidman in 2013. That’s 7 years and 16 wins. It’s great but still less than Fedor. And i know Fedor had some fights that were not quality competition, but you can say the same about, Lutter and Cote and Irvin and others for Anderson. Besides even if the competition is not good, the more you fight the more you risk getting caught in something and loosing. Like GSP did with Sera.

Talking about GSP, his peak was 6 years and 12 fights. You can add a year and a couple of wins before the Sera fight but still its not as great as Fedor’s.

Jon Jones was great and was looking to break the record but we all know how he sabotaged himself. Someone might say Jones fought ONLY top contenders but it’s not like Fedor didn’t fight and beat all the top contenders of his time. He did and he also fought some fun fights which don’t add much to his legacy other than, as i said before, that he avoided the risk of getting caught in something like others have. He even survived that slam of death from Randleman.


Then you can add or withdraw points for smaller stuff. Like how Fedor was small for heavyweight, or that he fought and beat great opponents like Big Nog, at their own game. or how Anderson went up in weight 3 times and won in spectacular fashion, or how GSP left the sport at the top. But i don’t think they change the result since you can find plus and minus for all guys, but Fedor did it for the longest time. Thats the big differentiator.

There are of course other greats besides these guys, and some of you probably disagree with me and think someone else is the GOAT. I would love to hear your opinion and your train of though. Let me know in the comments bellow what you think.


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