This weekend’s UFC Fight Night 85 event is headlined by former heavyweights Mark Hunt and Frank Mir squaring off at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre in Brisbane, Australia.
In the welterweight co-main event, American Top Team?s Hector Lombard returns from a year-long suspension to face Neil Magny. The rest of the main card features Jake Matthews vs Johnny Case, Bec Rawlings against Seo Hee Ham and a pair of middleweight scraps, as four-time Australian Olympian Daniel Kelly confronts Antonio Carlos Jr. and James Te Huna battles Steve Bosse.
According to Sherdog.com, Mir can bag the fight with his boxing skills which gives him an advantage over his opponent. As a former UFC champion and decorated submission artist, Mir has been competing inside the Octagon for nearly 15 years. He has toppled notables such as Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Brock Lesnar and Tim Sylvia with his submission grappling. However, most of his spectacular wins that include his two most recent victories, have come due to his boxing skills. In his recent fights, he has displayed even more improved defense aside from significant changes in his striking game, as he has become a powerful hitter with his smart combination of punches.
Also, since Mir has a more diverse skill set as he relies on his high-caliber Brazilian jiu jitsu, if he can get through Hunt?s takedown defense, then victory will be a cake walk for him. Mir also has a four-inch height advantage over Hunt, and of late showed an increased tendency to stand and trade shots with opponents. He, however, will need to remain cautious to avoid knockout punches, which Hunt routinely lands on taller and longer opponents.
Hunt, on the other hand, a former K-1 kickboxing champion, possesses some of the heaviest and most accurate punches in the UFC, as evidenced by his impressive knockout record and multiple performance bonuses. Upon entering the UFC, Hunt has earned an impressive 6-4-1 record, almost all of it against champions and contenders.
With him, it has always been about striking at which he is quite excellent, coupled with superb takedown defense and some nice scrambling skills, he is a solid mixed martial artist. But he can be inconsistent despite his impressive UFC career and Mir could surely exploit this weakness.
As both the opponents enter the fight at maximum weight allowance of 265 pounds, stamina will be a key factor to determine the winner. Hunt was always a wrecking machine as a young kickboxer but given that in his middle age, he has settled into the role of a boxer-puncher, picking his shots, working from long range and countering his lumbering opponents with terrific precision.
Mir, however, is not a man of patience and his sense of energy conservation is not so keen which can be a serious threat. Also, Mir is usually far too willing to be backed into the fence and with a striker such as Hunt, it could spell doom. But whatever, he has been consistent with jumping on an opportunity and giving his full energy into beating his opponent in the attempt.