Former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir is set to make his big Bellator debut as he faces off against heavyweight legend Fedor Emelianenko on the highly anticipated fight card of Bellator 198. With the fight night just hours away, the former title holder has come forward with some critical words concerning “The Last Emperor.”
Fedor Emelianenko is a mixed martial arts legend. While Emelianenko is often in the conversation as one of the greatest fighters of all time, the MMA competitor never reached the superstar star status of Conor McGregor or Jon Jones.
Speaking to MMANYTT, Frank Mir decided to give his thoughts on the matter.
“The thing that really shot him in the foot and I know that the UFC was probably interested in signing him. What shot him in the foot was that he fought Andrei Arlovski. He fights a fight over here [in the United States] in Affliction and guess what? They got to see what he pulled and it wasn’t impressive. So they’re like ‘you’re not worth the several million that you’re asking for, you can’t sell out a card, no one wants to watch you fight’. Because you don’t do interviews, people aren’t interested in it. Whatever the case may be, he’s not Conor McGregor, he’s not Brock Lesnar.”
“Brock has nowhere the accolades and accomplishments that Fedor has but I guarantee right now if you were going to tell me you get pay-per-view buys who do you want to fight? I’d fight Brock even if they had to pull him off his death bed. Brock knows how to sell a fight. People are interested in watching him fight.
“No one cares about watching Fedor.”
“It’s self-inflicted. That’s Fedor. He doesn’t want to do interviews. In January when Bellator had their card with Chael [Sonnen] and Quinton [Jackson] and they were asking all the heavyweights, everybody in the Grand Prix, we had to do that whole walkout. Well me, Ryan Bader, King Mo, [Matt] Mitrione, all showed up to the rehearsals because we knew that’s part of us being fighters. Fedor didn’t show up. That just shows you the mindset. Then he stepped on the wrong spot, he didn’t know where to stand because he wouldn’t come to the rehearsals because ‘I’m a fighter, I get paid to fight’. No, you don’t. Yes, you’re a fighter. There’s only one Conor, one Chael, we don’t all have to be that guy. I’m not that guy. But you still have to open that door and give people a reason to watch you fight.”
“There’s only one athlete I know that can be a complete dick to his fans and get away with it and that’s Brock. But he has that star power. He could probably sell tickets to him going to the bathroom. He has it. I don’t have it. Fedor doesn’t have it so you have to go out there and do the work. Answer phone calls, do interviews, put yourself out there so people go ‘I want to watch this guy fight’. Whether you want to see me get my face punched in or you want to see me take someone’s arm off, I need you to be interested in me.
“If you’re not interested in me, how do I go to Bellator and say ‘this is how much I want for the fight’. They’re like no, you’re not worth it.”