Fedor Emelianenko has come up short in a Sambo tournament this past weekend, earning only a Bronze medal after losing decisively to Bulgarian Blagoi Ivanov, according to a report from MMAMania. As one might imagine, this is somewhat of a big deal since Fedor practically had to scour the earth just to find a willing Sambo opponent in the past. Not to mention that Fedor walked through Ivanov with ease in their previous meeting. Of course, Sambo is not exactly MMA, but it isn’t terribly far off either. If pressed, I would have to agree that combat Sambo is about as close as one is going to get to modern mixed martial arts.
Additionally, Fighters Only is now passing along the rumor that Ivanov’s performance has earned him a contract with Affliction, which was apparently inked “immediately after winning the tournament.” Wow, that Atencio guy must work fast.
The overall point remains that Fedor has finally lost at something, and he just might not be the Skynet-created cyborg some thought he was. I can also imagine Andrei Arlovski (a highly accomplished Sambo man as well) getting wind of Fedor’s shiny new bronze and smiling just a little bit. If nothing else, it couldn’t hurt his confidence when he steps in to face Emelianenko at Affliction: Day Of Reckoning on January 24th.