Fedor Emelianenko, the all-time heavyweight MMA legend, recently retired from the sport – following his first-round TKO loss against Ryan Bader, at Bellator 290.
Nevertheless, “The Last Emperor” said that he is content with the decision to retire:
I feel great [about my decision].
My age [helped me make up my mind], first of all, but all my injuries I’ve had in the past started to remind me of it. My body doesn’t feel the same as it used to be.
The 46-year-old will stay involved with MMA, though, as he doesn’t plan on “total retirement” like Khabib Nurmagomedov has done:
Of course, I’ll be involved still because I have my team. These guys are like family to me.
No matter what’s going to happen, I’ll be next to them all the time. I will try to do my best and help them in any way I can. All my life I was in sport. The sport is part of my life.
Emelianenko emphasized that he understands Khabib’s decision to withdraw from the sport completely:
This is Khabib’s decision. That’s his choice.
We spend so much time outside of our families because of the sport in [training] camps, sometimes you call it quits, and that’s it.[But] no matter what I’m going to do, I’m still going to share my experience, all my knowledge. No matter what I’m going to do, I’m going to have different hobbies, whatever is going to be happening, no matter what I’m still going to be with my team because the sport is in my blood.
Especially when you have young kids and they’re waiting for you.