It's been a while since we've seen Frank Mir, almost a year, actually. He last competed inside the Octagon at UFC 146 all the way back on May 26, 2012, losing via knockout to then Heavyweight Champion Junior dos Santos. He was supposed to head over to Strikeforce to help close its doors with a bang in a match-up against rising star and undefeated former Olympic wrestler Daniel Cormier but an injury postponed the proceedings.
Well, now it's time to get down to business.
Cormier will make his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) debut tonight (Sat., April 20, 2013) in the co-main event of UFC on Fox 7: "Henderson vs. Melendez" at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. That's fitting enough, considering that was basically homebase for Strikeforce, the mixed martial arts (MMA) organization he rose to prominence with.
Now it's time to see if he can tango with the big boys.
The mental game is already well underway. For his part, Mir attacked Cormier's size, or lack thereof:
"As far as Daniel as an opponent, I think he's dangerous. He comes from a great camp. He has all the right tools to be very successful in his career. I think limiting factors are his size: I'm curious to see how well he's going to do against some of the larger guys in the UFC. ... I think he himself knows that too. He's already made allusions to fighting at 205. I think he height, if you look at it... I was standing there staring over across and watching him and Melendez standing side by side and we have the same height of opponent. I'm like 'wow, me and Benson are fighting the same guy with the same reach, one's just quite heavier than the other.'"
Cormier, meanwhile, went after Mir's fragile mental state and inability to overcome adversity in the middle of a fight:
"I'm not going to change the way I fight, at all. I'm going to get out there, I'm going to get going forward, I'm going to start putting pressure on Frank and try to make him wilt. I want to make him go to a place where you have to really dig deep and say 'okay, I'm going to win this fight.' I always try to say things I truly believe and I don't think Frank's proven that many times. That when it comes down to just grit and will and determination that he's willing to push through that wall. In a battle of wills, I think I win every time."
Oh, dis gon be gud.
MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the main card action on fight night (Sat., April 20, 2013), which is slated to air at 8 p.m. ET on FOX. The latest play-by-play fight updates of the live action will begin to flow earlier than that, however, around 3:30 p.m. ET with the "Prelims" undercard bouts on Facebook and FX Channel.
For all the current news and notes on UFC on FOX 7: "Henderson vs. Melendez" be sure to check out our complete event archive right here.