LINK (in Russian)
The original looks longer than the translation I found
Three time combat sambo champion and one of the most extravagant masters in MMA jumped into a conversation with the journalists of SE.
We met Emelianenko junior on the Krasin Street, near the corporate HQ. We've reminisced how Nikolai Valuev has stumbled into SE the same way. We talked for an hour, and after that the giant Nikolai went to catch a cab. At that time barely anyone knew his face - the cars were afraid to stop for Valuev. Many would cross the lane into oncoming traffic.
The 27-year-old Aleksander Emelianenko, who's acknowledged by the whole world as one of the best MMA fighters, is rarely recognized on the streets of Moscow. Although in New York and Tokyo he can barely walk around. Even, when we met with his brother, famous Fedor Emelianenko, not too long ago in the crowd of the Kursk train station. We found a quiet corner and sat down, without anyone recognizing him. And just to the side of us, the kiosks of pirated discs were flooded with the fight bootlegs of the Emelianenko brothers. It was a fantastic feeling.
Aleksander has knocked out giants in such a way, that at times it seemed as if the floor was giving way. The worried doctors often times had to get the mouthpiece with their hands off of his opponents, and not everyone was able to raise their hands after a meeting with Emelianenko. No wonder the Americans gave him the nickname The Grim Reaper.
He came in wearing tall army boots. Sideways, bent his head to squeeze into the door. We remembered the site mesilovo.ru, which specified Sasha's height at 198 centimeters...
Your brother, the legendary Fedor, mentioned that, as a fighter, you are more talented than him. Do you feel like that?
- Of course I feel like that. I don't know what I don't have that Fedor does. I am the strongest. Better than anyone. I'm ready to fight with any fighter in the world - whoever is number one, whether in ratings, or by recongition. I will mess anybody up.
It's sad, that we can't even train with my brother. He lives in Stary Oskol, I live in Petersburg. We're both travel year-round.
You used to practice together before?
Yes. And we went at it at full strength. I boxed better. I was beating Fedor with my hands. And I was practicing without a coach, - I was training my hands by myself; whatever I felt was right. I just got a boxing coach not too long ago, Yuri Razumov. I realized that my understanding of boxing that I had at the time was...
Not even boxing, something else?
I didn't know crap! Just now, I finally saw what boxing was. Now, I trained my hands to be good. I'm boxing at a level higher. Did you hear about a young fighter - Kirill Sidelnikov?
Not a bad kid. Earlier he could somewhat hang with me in the ring, and now his coach is almost in tears; screaming "Don't hit him. Kirill is not ready yet. He's not gonna box with you again like that..." Then turns around to him and says "Aleksander has progressed, and you're just standing still!"
If you're more talented than Fedor, why is he number one and undefeated, and you're just barely making the top 10?
Fedor, in his time took the belt and held on to it. At that time I was the youngest fighter in Pride. Started fighting at 23, I just lacked basic experience. And I had to fight without any coaching. What I could - I learned from Fedor. I lost to the famous Croatian - Crocop just because it was only my fourth fight. I was just a kid.
And your brother just not too long ago went to Thailand with Crocop to study special styles of boxing
Yeah. I was not prepared. Didn't have the means.
What did he catch you with?
A kick to th head. With Josh Barnett it went a little different. I was beating the guy up for 10 minutes straight; broke his nose.. This Barnett is now doing everything to avoid a new fight. He knows what will happen to him.
But in that fight, broken nose and all, Barnett was able to beat you
I came to fight with a 37.4 temperature. Before each fight we go through the medical exams, and the doctors didn't want to let me fight. But the fight was part of the Grand Prix - you fight for your honour in those competitions. Eventually, I couldn't finish him, ran out of steam.
So how could a man with a broken nose take the win from you?
I messed up his nose before the break. Then they brought him back, stopped the bleeding. Barnett had one chance - to go in for the shoot. He gathered for this shoot; ran at me, hit me with a body shot and got me to the ground, where he ended up on top.
Is it a heroic to win with such an injury?
Nothing heroic. Just heart.
Did you have instances where you had to use your "heart"?
In my fight with Ricardo Morais I broke by hand in two places. Look - I still have a growth on my wrist. I threw a combination of punches - on about third or fourth punch I broke my hand. And after that I threw about five more punches.
You didn't feel the pain?
I felt it when Morais fell down. I started thinking 'if he gets up and continues the fight, I can't hit with this hand, will need to change my stance'
But the guy, whose head you used to break the hand, he didn't get up?
No he didn't
You think someone would get up after that?
Doubt it. Although Morais throughout his whole career was never even in a knockdown. And I knocked him out. He fell standing forward. With all his height of 205.
What place are you in the world rating?
I have no idea. My rating is also not as high, because americans have bought out Pride. The fighters they needed they took with their contracts. And for the rest, they told them "You want to fight with us? We'll be paying 500 dollars a fight. If you don't want that - get the hell out..."
So you have nowhere to fight?
Exactly. I spent a long time without any fights, until I signed a contract with Affliction for 3 fights. Japanese also opened a new organization - "Dream", want me to fight there.
If you would end up in American league today - you would start beating their local heroes?
I don't see any heroes there. Noguiera is their champion, whom Fedor destroyed three times. He's an experienced fighter, but it seems he got old because of all the fights. It's time for him to rest. I'm, on the other hand just getting started. My last loss was a long time ago.