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Fedor Emelianenko to take on former UFC heavyweight Tim Johnson in Bellator return

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Fedor Emelianenko will return to the cage to take on Tim Johnson at Bellator 269.

Bellator Japan Weigh-In
Fedor Emelianenko arrives at the Bellator Japan weigh-in on Dec. 28, 2019 at the Westin Tokyo.
Photo by Jun Sato/WireImage

Fedor Emelianenko’s mystery opponent has been revealed, and it probably isn’t what you were expecting.

The PRIDE heavyweight legend will return to the Bellator cage on October 23 to take on former UFC heavyweight Tim Johnson at Bellator 269 in Moscow.

Bellator MMA confirmed the matchup on Thursday after TASS was first to announce the news on social media earlier this week.

The bout will serve as the Bellator 269 main event and is scheduled for three rounds only.

Emelianenko, 44, hasn’t fought since Dec. 2019, when he knocked out former UFC light heavyweight champ Rampage Jackson at Bellator 237. The Russian is 3-2 in his last five fights and is still widely considered one of the greatest heavyweight fighters of all time.

Johnson, 36, is currently #2 in the Bellator heavyweight rankings but is coming off a decision loss to Valentin Moldavsky, who beat the former to capture the interim Bellator heavyweight title. The American 3-1 in his last four fights, with recent victories over Cheick Kongo and Matt Mitrione.

Bellator 269: Emelianenko vs. Johnson will take place on Oct. 23 at the VTB Arena in Moscow, Russia.

Below is the card’s current lineup:

  • Fedor Emelianenko vs. Tim Johnson
  • Tyrell Fortune vs. Vitaly Minakov
  • Usman Nurmagomedov vs. TBA