After coming up short in trying to win his third Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight title against Junior dos Santos at UFC 146 back on May 26, 2012, Frank Mir has had time to sit back and reflect.
During a training camp, a fighter can try their best to simulate any possible scenario and/or gameplan their opponent may try to use on them in order to head into the Octagon with a well versed plan of their own. Sometimes, it just doesn't work out the way you envisioned it.
Mir, much like Junior's eight previous UFC opponents, quickly realized he was facing a heavyweight fighter with speed of which very few possess. "Cigano" used his great footwork and hand speed to pick apart Mir on the feet, while using his distance to prevent any takedown attempts from Mir, whose best chance at winning was taking it to the ground and look for the submission.
In the end, the Brazilian won via second round technical knockout (TKO) and set up a potential rematch with Cain Velasquez later this year. After that, it is widely believed that Alistair Overeem will get the next title shot, even though he will be coming off of a nine month layoff courtesy of the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) due to his elevated testosterone debacle.
And Frank Mir doesn't have a problem with that.
The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt spoke to MMAmania.com and discussed what he feels went wrong in his title fight with Dos Santos as well as gave his opinion as to why he believes "The Reem" still deserves to be number one contender.
Check it out:
"I really underestimated his great footwork and his speed. A lot of heavyweight fights we see the strength and power. I was also just used to having guys stand there and trade with not a whole lot of movement, but the whole moving around, I wasn't really prepared for that. I tried to attack, and, he isn't there and I ended up getting the fist in the face for my efforts. After the loss, I saw that, and said to myself, 'Man that really works well.' Obviously, he threw great combinations as well."
UFC President Dana White has confirmed that Overeem will be the next number one contender after Cain Velasquez and Dos Santos exchange leather, despite many believing he should fight one more time to re-earn his number one statues due to his layoff.
Mir, for one, doesn't see it that way:
"I think that's fair. What we base number one contenders on is what happens inside the Octagon. As far as a popularity contest, we can look at everybody as a whole and see what they do outside of the cage, if a fighter is good or he isn't. I don't care what he does in his extracurricular activities, it's what he is able to do inside of the Octagon. He was number one contender before the incident. Once he is available again, I don't see why he doesn't automatically skyrocket back up."
Overeem will not be able to return to action until the early parts of 2013, which gives plenty of time for either Cain or "Cigano," whoever prevails the victor, to recover and prepare for their next bout with the dangerous Dutch striker.
For Mir, his next challenge is uncertain, perhaps a fight against Velasquez, who was Mir's original opponent at UFC 146, is in order, should "Brown Pride" fail to recapture his title from the tight grasp that Dos Santos currently has on it.
What do you think? Do you agree with Mir's sentiments that Overeem is still the true number one contender despite of the fact that he will be coming off of a nine-month layoff?
Who would you like to see Frank face his next time out?