New York, NY- December 18, 2015 – “The Last Emperor,” Fedor Emelianenko (34-4) finally has an opponent for his highly-anticipated return to the sport of mixed martial arts. Former K-1 kickboxing champion, Jaideep Singh (2-0) will take on the Russian icon in the main event of the inaugural Rizin Words Fighting Grand-Prix. Spike will begin its three-hour coverage of this star-studded New Year’s Eve MMA event on Thursday, December 31 at a special time of 10:00am ET/PT.
Singh trains with four-time K-1 World Grand Prix champion Peter Aerts, and Rudimar Fedrigo, the founder and head trainer of famed Brazil-based MMA camp Chute Boxe that is responsible for spawning the careers of a host of retired and active world champions including Anderson Silva, Wanderlei Silva, and Mauricio and Murilo “Ninja” Rua.
Recent additions to the card include
- The ever-popular American fighter Bob Sapp taking on Akebono Taro, the renowned former Sumo wrestler and MMA fighter under SHOOT boxing rules.
- Bellator’s exciting welterweight contender Brennan Ward (12-3) looks for a fourth straight win against undefeated Ken Hasegawa (10-0-1) from Japan in a catchweight fight.
· Bellator superstar King Mo (16-4) will be part of the eight-man heavyweight tournament that will begin on December 29. His opponent in the first round will be BAMMA vet Brett McDermott(5-2). Other tournament fighters include Satoshi Ishii, Teodoras Aukstuolis, Bruno Cappelozza, Jiri Prochazka, Goran Reljic and Vadim Nemkov.
- A battle of hard-hitting heavyweights as Bellator British slugger James “The Colossus” Thompson(20-15) takes on Tsuyoshi Kosaka (26-18-2), whose impressive resume includes bouts with Randy Couture, Fedor Emeliannko, and Antonio Rodrigo “Minotauro” Nogueira.
Emanating from the Saitama Super Arena in Tokyo, Japan, the MMA mega-event marks the debut of a Rizin World Fighting, a new global MMA promotion run by former Pride Founder Nobuyuki Sakakibara. The Grand-Prix includes a tournament and fights on December 29 and December 31.
Spike will broadcast the December 31 card on a short delay in the morning (10:00am-1:00pm ET/PT) along with coverage of marquee fights and highlights from bouts fought on December 29.