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Amazing display of human potential in martial arts

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Kelly Bennett
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If you're like me, you like seeing human greatness, even if it's displayed in a venue you're not generally interested in. For example, I have no interest whatever in basketball, however I love watching clips of Michael Jordan and Larry Bird. I'm not interested in boxing, but it's very enjoyable to watch clips of Ali and so on. It can give you sense of exaltation to witness true greatness embodied in a man - to see someone who has utterly mastered their art and their body. For that reason I love to watch Fedor Emelianenko fight. I'm not an MMA fan by any stretch of the imagination, in fact generally I find the sport pretty barbaric, but this man is truly great at what he does.

His record is 32 wins 2 losses which is absolutely unheard of in the sport. And his sportsmanship is unparalleled. He is unfortunately extremely modest and mystical, but none the less, really great to watch. If you're interested here is a video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77QoN2P90b0

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Just being great at what you do, doesn't quite cut it - what is it you do, is relevant.

"Mastered their art and body" ?

I've seen a charging Cape buffalo with more grace than him.

There is one great person to come out of Russia, and it's not Fedor.

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Just being great at what you do, doesn't quite cut it - what is it you do, is relevant.

"Mastered their art and body" ?

I've seen a charging Cape buffalo with more grace than him.

There is one great person to come out of Russia, and it's not Fedor.

lol. He's not a ballerina and this isn't swan lake. You want grace and beauty go watch the ballet. The fact is that this man is incredibly skilled. He is dominating a sport that has thousands of professionals and millions of fans. Watch the clips, watch him take down and dominate men much bigger and heavier than himself. I guess to the ignorant it just looks like a guy flailing around, but after 20+ years of martial arts all I can say is that "Mastered" is exactly the right word for what Fedor has done.

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If his career wasnt controlled by russian thugs perhaps he could fight in the UFC and beat some real competition. From what Ive seen, these guys dominate in Pride fighting championships and move on to the UFC only to get their asses kicked. Maybe Fedor could be the one to do it, Cro-Cop sure hasnt. Mauricio Rua has done well now that I think of it, hes an exception.

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Yeah, his opponents can't wait to do the 'dying swan', can they? But, man, no finesse, no tactics: he rushes in flailing, as you say, with round-house punches that sooner than later put his guy down. Presumably he has ability to take some heavy punches while he's in close, but no one's going to take his fire power for long. Effective and brutal, but martial art? - not to me.

I just cannot admire his style, nor the discipline, and I've enjoyed some top boxers; Fedor is just an element of nature for me, like a landslide.

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But, man, no finesse, no tactics: he rushes in flailing, as you say, with round-house punches that sooner than later put his guy down. Presumably he has ability to take some heavy punches while he's in close, but no one's going to take his fire power for long. Effective and brutal, but martial art? - not to me.

I just cannot admire his style, nor the discipline, and I've enjoyed some top boxers; Fedor is just an element of nature for me, like a landslide.

This is all wrong. These guys are some of the most skilled athletes in the world. You could put a 280 lb. bar fighting monster in there with a guy half his size whos been properly trained and disciplined in MMA and it wouldnt last one round. Theres a lot of intricacies and a lot of finesse going on that easily escapes the untrained spectators eye. These new generation fighters have to be experts on their feet, on the ground, everywhere. Unlike the early days of MMA, if you specialize in one aspect of fighting, the opponent will exploit your weaknesses in other aspects very quickly.

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Yeah, his opponents can't wait to do the 'dying swan', can they? But, man, no finesse, no tactics: he rushes in flailing, as you say, with round-house punches that sooner than later put his guy down.

It may look like it from this particular video. But it is not true actually. Many of his opponents have been very well respected Collegiate and even Olympic medalist wrestlers and he has beaten them - not by knock out - but by submission. He is definitely a "thinking man's" fighter. Tons of tactic and skill. He essentially won 31 fights in a row, you can't do that by flailing your arms, lots of much heavier/stronger men have tried.

And by the way your comment:

There is one great person to come out of Russia, and it's not Fedor.

is a ridiculous and dogmatic thing to say. Are you suggesting that Kasparov isn't a great chess player?

That Dostoyevsky wasn't a great author? (regardless of wether you like his books)

That Rachmaninoff wasn't a great composer?

That Plushenko isn't a great skater?

You should probably take it back.

Edited by Kelly Bennett
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I've never seen a heavyweight fighter explode with that kind of speed and precision. To describe what he does in that video as rushing in, "flailing," is a gross misrepresentation. He was varying his strike locations (in combination) and responding to take-down/strike attempts with alacrity. He even had armbars on two different opponents who were not lying prone. That was fantastic.

I don't watch MMA much, but the last time I saw an arm-submission on someone who wasn't on the mat, Royce Gracie was dangling upside-down from the shoulder of a standing opponnent.

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I've never seen a heavyweight fighter explode with that kind of speed and precision. To describe what he does in that video as rushing in, "flailing," is a gross misrepresentation.

Totally! He is ultra fast for a heavyweight. His knockout punch vs. Bret Rogers was like a lightning bolt, and virtually no telegraphing either.

it's really a shame that he is almost unknown in America. I guess in Russia he is a superstar, Putin even attends his fights and he carried the torch for Russia during the Olympics.

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It may look like it from this particular video. But it is not true actually. Many of his opponents have been very well respected Collegiate and even Olympic medalist wrestlers and he has beaten them - not by knock out - but by submission. He is definitely a "thinking man's" fighter. Tons of tactic and skill. He essentially won 31 fights in a row, you can't do that by flailing your arms, lots of much heavier/stronger men have tried.

And by the way your comment:

is a ridiculous and dogmatic thing to say. Are you suggesting that Kasparov isn't a great chess player?

That Dostoyevsky wasn't a great author? (regardless of wether you like his books)

That Rachmaninoff wasn't a great composer?

That Plushenko isn't a great skater?

You should probably take it back.

Ok, don't get excited, I thought it was obvious I was being facetious.

On a sliding scale, athletes have their place in the scheme of things with composers and authors - and 'athlete' to my purist sensibility, does signify a decathlon athlete, or a gymnast, say. But that's my own personal take, and I'm not going to fight about it.

Fedor is without doubt effective. That was my worst nemesis when I boxed a bit (at school).

The kind of fighter who was built like 'a brick sh##-house', shorter and bulkier - who could take punishment from your left jabs, but keep coming in close, and start swinging at you with haymakers. Skinny as I was, there was no defense against that style, and I'd end up on my pants.

Agreed, he is blindingly fast, with incredible power, shrugs off punches - and he fights to his strengths, so that is tactical. Mostly, he hasn't forgotten when he went hungry.

I wonder how he'd do as a pro boxer.

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  • 3 weeks later...

You'll have to keep in mind that boxing is very different in MMA. In regular boxing you have big gloves to protect you with, and you don't have to look out for kicks and takedowns. That allows for putting up a tight guard, certain head movement and you play more by creating and exposing holes in your opponents game. In MMA Fedor's particular style of russian boxing is much better. He keeps his guard lower and further in front of him(somewhat like early european boxing). That way it's easier to keep some distance to the opponent, and the lower hand position allows him to deliver fast "haymakers" as well as protecting him from kicks and takedowns. His style is rather similar to another great fighter, from the early days of MMA - Igor Vovchanchyn:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=geJteSA6LCo

As a pro boxer Fedor would get his ass whooped, though the same thing would happen to the pro boxer if he met Fedor in an MMA match. They are different sports and require different skills, and Fedor is not just a good striker. Fedor also holds several gold medals in the World's Combat Sambo Championships(as well as the russian and european championships). So, his striking is very good, for MMA purposes, his wrestling is world class and he's incredibly quick and agile for a heavyeight.

One of his greatest strengths, however, I think is that he manages to stay calm and calculating even in difficult situations. On several occasions he's been in serious trouble, but somehow he manages to keep his head together and find a sollution. The only exception would be his latest loss(the only one that really counts, as the first one was more of a joke), where he got overconfident and underestimated his opponent.

As for his modesty and mysticism I wouldn't fault him too much for that. His job is to be a great fighter, not an intelectual. I also think it's nice, for a change, to find fighters who don't talk alot of smack.

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If his career wasnt controlled by russian thugs perhaps he could fight in the UFC and beat some real competition. From what Ive seen, these guys dominate in Pride fighting championships and move on to the UFC only to get their asses kicked. Maybe Fedor could be the one to do it, Cro-Cop sure hasnt. Mauricio Rua has done well now that I think of it, hes an exception.

Is that a fact, that his career is controlled by russian thugs? Seems to be alot of rumors floating around, but as I see it it seems to make alot of sense for Fedor to stay where he is. He has most of his fanbase in Russia, and UFC isn't broadcasted there.

Regarding the Pride fighters I think most of them are just past their prime. Like Cro-Cop who has literally stated that he'd much rather be home in Croatia, fishing. He's not hungry anymore, except for fish perhaps, and you can see it clearly. I mean, this is what he used to look like:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Im7uo-c_Ih0

And this is how he used to fight:

Damn, I miss good 'ol Mirco. :(

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He's probably a decent heavyweight, but I strongly doubt he's the best in the world. How would we know? He hasn't fought any of the elite UFC fighters. He's fought former champs, and burn outs. Big deal. I'd bet he'd do okay in the UFC, but he seems waay hyped to me. I would like to see how he does in a real fight with current fighters.

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He's probably a decent heavyweight, but I strongly doubt he's the best in the world. How would we know? He hasn't fought any of the elite UFC fighters. He's fought former champs, and burn outs. Big deal. I'd bet he'd do okay in the UFC, but he seems waay hyped to me. I would like to see how he does in a real fight with current fighters.

Tim Sylvia, Andrei Arlowski, Minotauro and Cro-cop weren't exactly "burn outs" when he fought them. And with his record i'd say he's more than just decent.

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