Were you hoping for a Couture vs. Emelianenko fight? Yes, that fight - the greatest fight in mixed martial arts history. Hang it up, folks. It's not happening:
Established in 1997, the St. Petersburg-based M-1 held over 30 events under the ownership of Russian businessman Vadim Finkelstein, also the long-time manager of the much-sought-after Emelianenko. Finkelstein is also the proprietor of the Red Devil Sports Club, a facility and team that houses numerous Russian fighters, including PRIDE veteran Roman Zentsov and former UFC middleweight Andrei Semenov.
The source confirmed the new ownership has infused a substantial amount of capital into the organization. Finkelstein and others will stay on to assist in running the company, which will continue to promote under a variation of the M-1 name. The new M-1 will take more of a global stance, and Emelianenko (26-1) will headline its inaugural event as early as January or February, possibly in the U.S., the source said.
On March 27, Ultimate Fighting Championship majority owners Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta bought the assets of PRIDE, only to discover Emelianenko had previously signed a non-exclusive, non-transferable contract with its former owners, Dream Stage Entertainment.
Fedor gets what he wants and the fans get none of what they want. Congrats, Mr. Emelianenko. I hope you're happy now.