Strikeforce held a media conference call today to promote the “Fedor vs. Henderson” event, which will take place in Chicago on July 30 and air on Showtime.
Fedor Emelianenko and his opponent, Dan Henderson, took questions from the media, as did Strikeforce women’s bantamweight champion Marloes Coenen, opponent Miesha Tate and Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker.
He will come in a little lighter than usual, at about 100 kg (220 pounds). He hasn’t fought at light heavyweight because he hasn’t received a significant offer to do so.
Fedor said it doesn’t matter that he is fighting under the Zuffa banner, as long as fans see the best fighters.
Asked if he would retire soon, Fedor said he would deal with everything after this fight. However, he did say he was in good health and would like to keep fighting.
Fedor said he would like to win a title again, but it’s more important to be a master of his craft and fight at the top of his game.
As for his legacy, he wants to be remembered as an Orthodox Christian fighter, as he credited God for blessing him several times during the call.
Henderson said the name of “Fedor” gets the juices flowing and that Fedor is not just a “name on a list” of career opponents.
He noted that this was the last fight on his Strikeforce contract. He said that wouldn’t change his approach, and like Fedor, questions about his future would be answered after this fight.
He did say would like to defend his Strikeforce light heavyweight title, which will not be on the line against Fedor.
Henderson said Fedor was never offered to him as an opponent when they both fought in PRIDE FC.
Who has the better right hand? “We’ll find out.”
She said she has enjoyed the growth of women’s MMA. She credited Gina Carano for bringing attention to the sport and Scott Coker for setting up the weight divisions.
She said women’s MMA used to be an open-weight situation in which she was sometimes outweighed by 60 pounds. Women’s fighters are smarter and more technical than they were in the past, she said.
Coenen said she has been preparing to defend against Tate’s takedowns, since that is her specialty (and nickname).
Tate said she has recovered from her knee injury and that the idea of “cage rust” after an 11-month layoff is more of a mental thing than anything else.
Tate added that she has put on some weight to enter the fight at a healthy 135 pounds.
She said she hopes her fight with Marloes would show UFC boss Dana White “what women’s MMA is all about.”
He said this could be greatest card in Strikeforce history, featuring two of the sport’s legends.
He also declined to say that the winner of tomorrow night’s Strikeforce Challengers bout between Liz Carmouche and Sarah Kaufman would automatically get the next title shot at the Coenen-Tate winner.