It sometimes seems as if Fedor Emelianenko couldn’t punch a speed bag at full force without popping something lose in his hand. Almost every time Fedor throws down it seems as if a hand injury announcement is on the immediate horizon, with his most recent bout with Brett Rogers being no exception to the rule.
The point being that Fedor, quite simply, punches way too hard for his own good. The velocity behind the power of his punch is just too much for his joints to withstand. A unique problem to have, no doubt.
So is Fedor the hardest punching mixed martial artist on the face of the earth right now? The eight knockouts in his thirty-one victories would scream at the average noob that this is not the case, yet if you’ve seen more than a few Fedor fights in your time, you should know this question is not to be so quickly dismissed or ridiculed.
I’ve heard from people sitting in the “cheap seats” during “Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers”, and they compared the sound of the knockout punch that was sent crashing into the chin of “Grim” to a baseball bat smacking against a watermelon no more than five or ten feet from them. Reminiscent of being in the expensive section of a Gallagher concert.
In what came as a complete shock to most, Fedor made it quite clear who the harder puncher was in the first round when he landed a left hook to the jaw of the much larger power puncher that caused Rogers massive body to shift nearly 90 degrees. Nobody expected that.
It’s not like this is the first time Fedor has knocked out a top heavyweight with a single punch, just ask Andrei Arlovski, he’ll tell you. Furthermore, I’m fairly certain if you asked Tim Sylvia who gave him the hardest smack in the course of his career…. I mean sure, he’d have to give Ray Mercer some love, but outside of that I’d imagine it would have to be Fedor.
That’s three fights in a row the decorated Sambo practitioner has deposited a larger, top rated heavyweight flat on their face in the blink of an eye through the power in his fists.
A fan of the sport since before Mark Coleman made his UFC debut, I was well familiar with the term ground and pound, yet the first time I feel like I truly witnessed what I believe to be ground and pound was Fedor’s terrifying beatdown of Heath Herring in November of 2002. Anyone that has had an opportunity to view the bout knows exactly what I’m talking about. Violent, brutal ground and pound at it’s very finest. That was the bout where I first came to the realization that deep down, Fedor was a sick, twisted f…… an extremely dangerous and sadistic fighter. The sound of the blows constantly bouncing off of Herring’s face and head were eerily similar to the sound of pounding on a steak with a meat hammer. If you look close you can actually see Fedor grinning while delivering some of the punishment. Scary stuff.
Of course the power of a man’s punch can be misleading and subjective (unless of course, your name is Cecil Peoples) but I felt the question deserved to be asked.
If I had a single vote in the “most likely to knock my a** out with a single punch” poll, I’m voting Fedor.