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Strikeforce, Showtime have Fedor in heavyweight tournament

January 4, 2011 |  1:19 pm


Russian heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko has agreed to a contract extension with the mixed-martial-arts organization Strikeforce and will anchor an eight-fighter heavyweight tournament that will begin Feb. 12 [updated] on Showtime.

Emelianenko (31-2), considered the world's top MMA fighter before an upset loss in June to Fabricio Werdum, will fight Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva, and former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski will fight Sergei Kharitonov on the card in East Rutherford, N.J.

The remaining quarterfinal matches will be between Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem and Werdum and Brett Rogers and Josh Barnett, possibly in April, a Showtime official said.

"We are thrilled to have come to a long-term agreement with Fedor," Strikeforce Chief Executive Scott Coker said in a prepared statement. "To have the greatest MMA fighter of all time put his legacy on the line in a single-elimination tournament will truly captivate MMA fans worldwide."

-- Lance Pugmire

Photo: Fedor Emelianenko. Credit: Robert Lachman/Los Angeles Times.