Exactly one year ago current heavyweight number one contender Frank Mir was preparing to face Roy “Big Country” Nelson at UFC 130 on Memorial Day Weekend. Nelson was just coming off a brutal beat down at the hands of reigning champion Junior dos Santos while Mir’s last fight was a KO of Mirko Cro Cop.
In a pre-fight interview for the bout against Nelson at UFC 130, Mir claims he is bigger, quicker and in a surprising statement, claims he hits harder than dos Santos. Coincidentally, roughly one year after making the initial comments, Mir is scheduled to challenge dos Santos for the UFC heavyweight championship at UFC 146 on May 26.
“I’m a lot bigger than (Junior) Dos Santos and I hit a lot harder. I’m a taller, longer athlete … quicker; I’ll constantly pepper him with shots when he comes in and make him pay when I do hit him with something. When I hit Cheick Kongo, the punch alone threw him halfway across the Octagon. On the night of the fight, neither one of us are going to pull any punches. If I catch him with something, I’ll try to hurt him with it.”
Mir has scored three career (T)KO wins opposed to dos Santos’ 10 career (T)KO victories. Will the former heavyweight champion try to stand with dos Santos and utilize what he considers a speed and power advantage to take the champion from the belt on the feet? Or will Mir be less confident in his striking come fight time?