Two worlds collide Saturday night when current Strikeforce Light Heavyweight champion Dan Henderson goes to battle with former heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko.
Fedor (31-3-1) has built a legacy around his name as one of the best heavyweight MMA fighters of all time, nearly going 10 years without a loss. But as of recent, the once seeming invincible warrior has saw defeat twice, being submitted by Fabricio Werdum over a year ago, and being pummeled by Antonio Silva this past February.
Following the Silva beating Fedor announced he was seriously contemplating retirement, but as we have learned from his predecessors, walking away from this sport isn’t as easy as making a simple decision.
Despite his previous losses, Fedor is a champion at heart, and has the skill to back it up. This fight will most likely be his last fight in the cage, and how better to go out then with a battle against Dan Henderson.
Henderson (28-8) has been followed by success with every organization he has fought for—Pride, UFC, and now Strikeforce. Last April it appeared Henderson had reached the end of his career when he lost the Strikeforce Middleweight championship to Jake Shields, but he quickly rebounded by winning his next two fights by way of TKO.
Stylistically these two warriors each have their advantages—Fedor is much more skilled on the ground, with Henderson being a stronger striker.
Look for Fedor to try to take the fight to the ground early, but with Henderson’s ability to stop the takedown, he may have to change his game plan. With both fighters having such a strong respect for one another, this fight is going to be like a chess match. One wrong move can mean a quick end to the night.
Henderson needs to use his striking game to look to take Fedor to his back where he can utilize the ground and pound. If he is able to dominate control he will be able to outmuscle the former heavyweight champion.
The fight is going to come down to whichever fighter makes fewer mistakes, and whoever is able to capitalize when the opportunity arises.
Don’t expect to see a street fight ending in the first 30 seconds of the first round. It will be a barn burner, and a true portray of two warriors’ talents.
Prediction- Fedor edges Henderson out to win unanimous decision.
The fight airs live on Showtime at 10 p.m. Eastern Saturday night.