Russian heavyweight Aleksander Emelianenko announced his retirement from MMA competition on Wednesday.

The 31-year-old Pride and M-1 veteran released an open letter to his fans, citing a chronic injury and a lack of time for his family as contributing factors in his decision.

“Unfortunately, I am no longer able to perform in the ring because of health problems caused by old injuries,” the statement reads. “I want to thank my fans for their support, for sticking with me despite everything [that was said] about me.”

The younger brother of one of the greatest fighters of all time, Fedor Emelianenko, Aleksander rose to fame fighting in Japan. During his stint with Pride FC from 2003 to 2006, the heavy-handed slugger accumulated a 6-2 professional record with notable wins over UFC veteran Assuerio Silva, Olympic judo gold medalist Pawel Nastula and former Pride number one contender Sergei Kharitonov.

Despite enjoying significant success in the Land of the Rising Sun and Russia, the heavily-tattooed three-time combat sambo world champion never managed to step out of the larger-than-life shadow of his older brother. His sporting situation worsened when he allegedly tested positive for hepatitis ahead of his fight with Paul Buentello in July 2008. Emelianenko has refuted the reports, though he never applied for another license to fight stateside nor was tested by an independent laboratory afterwards. He fought exclusively in Russia for the final five years of his career.

Emelianenko’s retirement follows only six months after his older brother stepped away from the sport after back-to-back first-round knockouts of Olympic judo gold medalist Satoshi Ishii and former three-time UFC heavyweight title contender Pedro Rizzo. With the Emelianenko brothers now enjoying their retirements, the Nogueira brothers -- Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira -- are now uncontested as MMA’s longest-serving and most successful active brother pair.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

UFC Vet Chris Leben Out of Retirement, Signs with Bellator

  • 8 days ago
  • 11 views

Bellator MMA on Saturday announced its latest acquisition, the signing of former WEC middleweight champion and UFC veteran Chris "The Crippler" Leben. read news >>

Jason ‘Mayhem’ Miller Comes Out of Retirement, Faces Luke Barnatt at Venator FC III

  • 4 days ago
  • 14 views

Venator Fighting Championship announced on Tuesday that it has signed Jason "Mayhem" Miller, who will face champion Luke Barnatt at Venator FC III on May 21. read news >>

BJ Penn Officially Ends UFC Retirement: Latest Details, Comments and Reaction

  • 26 days ago
  • 24 views

UFC Hall of Famer and former two-division champion BJ Penn officially announced his return to the Octagon on Tuesday. Per an interview on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani (via MMAFighting's Shaun Al-S read news >>

WSOF 28 heads to California with Marlon Moraes vs. Joseph Barajas title bout

  • 25 days ago
  • 9 views

WSOF has announced the headliner and co-headliner for WSOF 28, which takes place in California on Feb. 20.Filed under: News, WSOF read news >>

Brad Imes on retirement: They told me I was going to die or become a vegetable

  • 24 days ago
  • 9 views

Former college football player and “The Ultimate Fighter 2” runner-up Brad Imes found some success and plenty of fun in MMA. But following his retirement, he faced some dark days.Filed under: News, U read news >>

WSOF announces upcoming events in Connecticut, Massachusetts, North Dakota

  • 21 days ago
  • 5 views

WSOF’s summer plans have now been made official with the announcement of locations for WSOF 31, WSOF 32 and WSOF 33.Filed under: News, WSOF read news >>

WSOF 29: Gaethje vs. Foster Moves to New Colorado Venue

  • 21 days ago
  • 2 views

World Series of Fighting announced on Saturday that the location for WSOF29: Gaethje vs. Foster has been moved to a new Colorado location. read news >>

Cain Velasquez Injured, Stipe Miocic Steps in to Face Fabricio Werdum at UFC 196

  • 20 days ago
  • 101 views

UFC officials announced on Sunday that the former heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez has been forced to withdraw from the UFC 196 title fight against titleholder Fabricio Werdum. read news >>

12-time UFC veteran Anthony Perosh calls it quits at 43

  • 20 days ago
  • 3 views

Australian MMA veteran Anthony Perosh is retiring from active competition after more than 12 years as a professional fighter.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Victory FC 48 heads to Iowa on Feb. 19 with Jackson vs. Moreno title fight

  • 19 days ago
  • 3 views

Victory FC, which recently announced a new deal with UFC Fight Pass, has set a full lineup for its second event of the year.Filed under: News read news >>