Lesnar-Mir II will leave people talking
Preview by Brady Crytzer
The first fight was legendary because of its questions. The second fight will be historic because of its answers. In one of the most highly anticipated rematches in UFC heavyweight history, world champion Brock Lesnar meets former conqueror and interim titlist Frank Mir in a effort to redeem his lone Octagon loss. Since Mir locked up the 265 lb Lesnar in February of 2008, both men have been riding waves of momentum that have made this fight inevitable. Can Lesnar erase his lone disappointment and continue his dominance or will Mir prove that skill and will can still tackle strength.
Striking: There is no bigger wildcard in the sport of mixed martial arts than striking, particularly in the heavyweight division. While this match up pits two gargantuan grapplers against each other, both men have proven that their stand up can be a difference maker. In his last fight, the interim champion Mir peppered an overmatched and unwilling “Minotauro” Nogueira with punches en route to a second round KO. Although he looked impressive, it was a relative first in the Las Vegas native’s eight year career. Lesnar however has proven that he has fight changing, one punch power and he has proven it in all three of his Octagon appearances against names like Couture, Herring, and Mir. Consistancy is king in this match up. ;
Although Mir can throw, Lesnar has shown a penchant for staying in the pocket and landing the big shots. Mir has never stood toe-to-toe with a force as powerful as Lesnar and he won’t at UFC 100 either.
Grappling: There are very few big men in this sport more technical and more dangerous than Frank Mir when it comes to high level jiu jitsu. At over 250 lbs, Mir has shown that he can move with all the grace and speed of a featherweight and finish a fight at any time. Since the beginning of MMA time there has been one antithesis to jiu jitsu and it has always been dominate wrestling. It doesn’t get much bigger and badder than Brock Lesnar. Mir can pull off a submission in this fight, but it will take some unorthodox approaches that are rarely seen from the technician. Lesnar will keep the forward leaning pressure on Mir that will quite frankly squash any armbar or triangle attempts from the black belt. If Mir wants to tap out the big man, he will need to pull another rabbit out of his hat as seen in the first meeting between these two.
Mir can pull off the submission, but it would be an unlikely scenario. Lesnar will keep the pressure on Mir on the mat and pound away from the top position. Bigger, stronger, faster, and better cardio will give Lesnar and edge in this stanza.
How They Match Up: Last year this fight left people talking for weeks. The rematch will do it again. Although Mir submitted the giant Lesnar in his debut, the textbook kneebar that he did it with was a rookie mistake.
No fighter has ever looked more impressive in a 90 second loss than Lesnar.
Since the first fight with Mir, Lesnar has become more patient and more savvy in the cage and victories over Heath Herring and Randy Couture have proven that he is for real. There are no more questions as to whether Lesnar belongs in this sport.
Watch for Lesnar to make some serious waves in this fight early with big punches. Although Mir’s jiu jitsu is world class, Lesnar will use wrestling to wear the notoriously “quick-to-gas” Mir down and unload en route to his a third or fourth round TKO. Like the Herring fight, don’t expect a lot of fast paced action. Lesnar will slowly but surely tear his challenger apart.