Before Donald Trump became the president of the United States, he was involved in the MMA arena when he was a shareholder in the short-lived Affliction promotion alongside Oscar de la Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions and M-1 Global.
The Russian promotion for a time was the home of legendary heavyweight, Fedor Emelianenko, who returns to fight in the United States for the first time in a little over five-and-half years at Saturday’s Bellator 172 against Matt Mitrione.
Emelianenko headlined both events, beating former UFC heavyweight champions Andrei Arlovski and Tim Sylvia in a total of 3:50.
While the promotion is long gone that doesn’t mean Trump is forgotten in the MMA circles. According to former Emelianenko manager Vadim Finkelchtein, “The Donald” was a big fan of “The Last Emperor”
“He was always cheering for Fedor,” Finkelchtein told RT. “I know that for a fact. He was really happy when Fedor beat Arlovski. Despite the fact that Arlovski was technically representing American in this fight, as he speaks good English already had a solid fanbase in the States. But Trump was definitely in Fedor’s corner. I saw his reaction after the knockout. He was visibly pumped and rushed to the ring to congratulate Fedor.”
At this current time, relations between the United States and Russia are strained. Trump maintains he will be able to improve the relationship between the two powers. Finkelchtein isn’t sure that will be the case.
“I don’t know what kind of president Trump will be, though. Ik hope for a better relationship between Russia and the US.,” Finkelchtein stated. “Both countries can achieve more conducing a peaceful business rather than having this cold war which everybody is tired of. We want Americans not to worry about coming here. The media are making monsters out of us but when people come here they change their minds.”