Roy Jones Jr. wants to fight Fedor Emelianenko in an exhibition bout

Roy Jones Jr. is angling for a fight against one of the greatest heavyweight in mixed martial arts history. The former four-division world champion…

By: Karim Zidan | 5 months ago
Roy Jones Jr. wants to fight Fedor Emelianenko in an exhibition bout
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

Roy Jones Jr. is angling for a fight against one of the greatest heavyweight in mixed martial arts history.

The former four-division world champion recently revealing his interest in pursuing an exhibition bout against Fedor Emelianenko.

“Yes, such a fight is possible as an exhibition,” Jones, 53, told Tass.ru. “We have already somehow negotiated on this subject, but they have not been confirmed.”

Jones, who holds dual American and Russian citizenship, has not fought since his exhibition bout against Mike Tyson in November 2020. The fight lasted the full 8 rounds, and was declared a draw.

Meanwhile, Emelianenko, 46, is scheduled to take headline Bellator 290 next month in a retirement bout against Ryan Bader. The two previously competed at Bellator 214, where Bader defeated Emelianenko in the heavyweight Grand Prix final to become the organization’s heavyweight champion.

Exhibition bouts have become a popular way for boxers to continue to perform and earn a living following their professional retirement. Floyd Mayweather has competed in several such bouts since his final professional bout in 2017 against Conor McGregor, including a 2020 fight against internet sensation Logan Paul. Most recently, Mayweather defeated YouTuber Deji Olatunji, the younger brother of KSI, in an exhibition bout in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Though it remains unclear whether such a fight will ever come to fruition, a potential contest pitting Jones Jr. and Emelianenko would be a rare opportunity to see one of the greatest boxers of all time challenge one of the greatest MMA heavyweights of all time.

I think that such a fight is possible,” Jones said.

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About the author
Karim Zidan
Karim Zidan

Karim Zidan is a investigative reporter and feature writer focusing on the intersection of sports and politics. He has written for BloodyElbow since 2014 and has served as an associate editor since 2016. He also writes for The New York Times and The Guardian. Karim has been invited to speak about his work at numerous universities, including Princeton, and was a panelist at the South by Southwest (SXSW) film festival and the Oslo Freedom Forum. He also participated in the United Nations counter-terrorism conference in 2021. His reporting on Ramzan Kadyrov’s involvement in MMA, much of which was done for Bloody Elbow, has led to numerous award nominations, and was the basis of an award-winning HBO Real Sports documentary.

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