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Sunday, April 26, 2009

Fedor Emelianenko fights in Japan !

Only in Japan.

Famed heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko will meet lightweight stand-out Shinya Aoki during a five-minute "special exhibition" at an April 29 M-1 Challenge (presented by Affliction) event in Tokyo, the organization today announced.

Rules for the contest are still being negotiated.

And considering nearly 70 pounds and four weight classes separate the fighters, expect some safety precautions to be put in place. The bout could end up being more of a grappling session by the time the official rules are announced.

The Emelianenko vs. Aoki bout will join a 19-fight card that includes head-to-head M-1 Challenge matchups between host country Japan vs. England, Team USA West vs. South Korea, and Spain vs. France.

Emelianenko and Aoki, who both hold WAMMA world titles in their respective weight classes, are two of the most popular fighters in Japan, so the exhibition is likely to be a hit with fans.

Emelianenko (30-1), a World Combat Sambo champion who will compete in the Abu Dhabi Combat Club's submission fighting championships later this year, last competed in January when he defeated former UFC champ Andrei Arlovski at Affliction's "Day of Reckoning" show. The 32-year-old former PRIDE champ is undefeated in his past 27 fights.

Aoki (20-4), a standout grappler who's ended 12 of his 20 career wins via submission, last competed in April, when he suffered a 27-second TKO loss to welterweight Hayato Sakurai at DREAM.8. Aoki is 15-2 (with one no-contest) in his past 18 fights.

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