Less than a week after releasing now-former Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem, the company has cut ties with their most popular 265-pounder. Following Thursday’s UFC 133 press conference in Philadelphia, UFC president Dana White professed Emelianenko’s days with Strikeforce are officially over.
“He’s being cut, yeah,” White matter-of-factly stated. “Why? Do you think we should keep him?”
The 34-year-old suffered a controversial TKO loss to Dan Henderson this past Saturday. Nothing typically sends a fighter to the unemployment line quicker than running the reverse trifecta, but most believed the sport’s most decorated heavyweight would be the one determining when it was time to bounce.
Unfortunately for Emelianenko, White beat him to the punch and sent him packing.
“You guys thought he was the pound-for-pound best in the world, but I thought he was overrated for years,” White added.
Emelianenko owns an unmatched 31-4 (1 NC) record. Prior to his last three forgettable outings, the Russian was riding a 27-fight winning streak which span for nearly a decade.
“The Last Emperor” suggested he might continue fighting after getting put to sleep by Henderson, but it appears he will now have to resume his illustrious career elsewhere if that’s the case. Although Emelianenko’s in the midst of the longest losing skid of his life, with his last two defeats coming in devastating TKO fashion, his resume should provide for plenty of possible suitors.
However, while Emelianenko’s M-1 Global management have proven to be extreme pains to deal with when it comes to the negotiating table, their meal ticket’s his aura of invincibility has certainly disappeared.