Frank Mir, The Constant Heavyweight Contender

March 30, 2012
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Former UFC Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir

Frank Mir

Frank Mir seems to always be just one win away from a title shot.  The constant contender has fought in four UFC championship bouts, and if he gets past Cain Velasquez at UFC 146, he’ll be fighting for a UFC championship belt for a fifth time.

He’s seen the highest of highs and the lowest of lows during his career to this point.  He rose to the top of the heavyweight division at a young age.  He debuted in the organization at just 22 years old.  By the time he was 25, he was UFC heavyweight champion.

Before he could defend that title, Mir was involved in a motorcycle accident suffering a broken femur.  Many questioned if he’d ever get back to where he once was in the sport.  And his comeback performances following the injury fueled the doubters’ belief that Mir would never be the same.

It didn’t happen overnight, but Mir scratched and clawed his way back up the heavyweight ladder to win the UFC interim heavyweight title, but hasn’t been able to recapture the official title of UFC heavyweight champion.

On May 26, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Mir, again, finds himself on the cusp of fighting for the title and an opportunity to reclaim what was once his.  The only thing standing in his way is another former champion, Cain Velasquez.

Stylistically, hard hitting wrestlers have given Mir problems in recent bouts.  The last two men able to defeat Mir, Brock Lesnar and Shane Carwin, fit that description.  Mir recognizes this hole in his game and works hard to close it in training, but Velasquez’ wrestling is still a concern heading into the match-up.

“That concerns me greatly. I mean, wrestling is one of the things I have the hardest time with. So it’s always going to be an issue and it’s something for me to constantly work on and improve on in the gym,” Mir said at a press conference promoting the UFC 146 event.

“I think wrestling is a huge factor in all fights. Typically, the guy who is the better wrestler can decide where the fight goes, whether it’s standing, whether it’s on the ground. I just hope to make it to where both those are not viable choices,” he said about wrestling in the fight.

We might see a slightly slimmer Frank Mir when he steps into the Octagon to face Velasquez.  Mir bulked up before his rematch with Brock Lesnar, but believes it was an error in judgment and lighter is his optimal fighting weight.

“I find for myself in the gym, I can live with my performances, my conditioning, my speed is best when I’m a little bit lighter. I thought gaining size would’ve helped me make up for the size difference in Brock, but that was really more of a technical difference. I looked at the wrong area on what to improve. So right now I’m happy where I’m at right now,” he said.

If he emerges victorious against Velasquez, Mir anticipates fighting for the title against the winner of Junior dos Santos and Alistair Overeem in a six to eight month timeframe.

“May 26, I have a very tough opponent ahead of me, and then after that over the winner between Alistair and dos Santos, six to eight months after that. So hopefully by the end of the year, beginning of next year, I could be in a title fight.”

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  • ultimatebrosky

    if he gets passed velasquez he’s more than likely getting knocked out against dos santosor overeem….mir doesn’t have much of a chin and I honestly don’t see him getting passed velasquez…I would enjoy seeing air against werdum though.

    • Lesnardo

      He is NOT going to get passed Cain. Hard punchers dominate Mir.

      Didn’t Mir used to preach the importance of size after he got molested by Brock? He hired strengthening coach and bulked up. And after he beat Kongo (who is a bum) he said that he can beat anyone now since big wrestlers can’t bully him around anymore.

      I mean..Mir is annoying.

      Mir vs Werdum is probably more evenly matched.

      • phrankthetank

        Mir has very crisp striking himself and Cain has a suspect chin as well. He got dropped by Kongo and KOed early by JDS. If Cain employs a Lesnar like strategy and grinds Mir out he should take this, though Mir is slick on the ground. If it stays on the feet it’s anyone’s fight. I give the edge to Cain, but only just.

        • Lesnardo

          “Mir has very crisp striking”…lol.

          Cain can employ Lesnar like strategy or Carwin like strategy (which is upper cutting the krap out of Mir against the cage).

          Mir got dropped by Nog, perhaps the weakest puncher in the HW division.

          Cain’s chin is suspect. But we KNOW (that is, we don’t suspect) that Mir’s chin is weak.

          • phrankthetank

            I’ll take the “lol” response to mean that you really have nothing to rebute that claim. Mir’s been KOed by carwin, a big ass dude with some serious power, getting tagged and dropped by big nog does say something, but recovering and breaking his arm says a lot more.

  • Never underestimate Frank. I know him, I have rolled with him and he’s always evolving. He’s incredibly intelligent as well. This will be an interesting fight for sure.

    • Lesnardo

      I am sure in real life the guy is a beast. But in the world of top MMA fighters, the guy is not a contender. He is a gatekeeper.

      • rsnowbass


        I love these personal testimonials like “I know him” as if that’s supposed to give more credibility…

        They all roll with lots of people Brutha…

        • Lesnardo

          “I know him” argument is one of the stupid arguments that are popular here. Another popular dumb argument is, “[FIGHTER NAME] could kick your ass you keyboard warrior! You would never say that to him in front of his face!”

          I know Frank Mir in real life. He is a beast. Uh…yeah…okay…dude.

  • pooby

    I just knew Lesnardo would be all over this page with the smell of Cain’s balls on his breath.

    Viva La Razists!!

    • sameames

      Ha ha ha, no shit right?

    • Lesnardo

      Not really. Dude. I am just being objective here. Given Mir’s track record, don’t you think picking him as the winner is a lil ridiculous?? no?? This is not exactly Mir vs Carwin, Lesnar vs Overeem, or Shogun vs Forrest II where it is a toss up. Cain is a solid contender and Mir is a bit washed up. Mir is the new Nog.

  • adam1848

    Mir is a good gate keeper and commentator and a very well rounded fighter…I have nothing against him. But lets be real, Cain is gonna light him up. Frank’s only advantage is on the ground and his chances of getting the fight there are about as good as me winning 640 million bucks tonight. His hands have come a long way, but they are still not in the same league as Cain’s. Cain wins this fight without a scratch in the first.

    • Lesnardo

      In terms of technical boxing maybe Mir has improved. But the punching power difference and the ability to absorb punishment is too big between Mir and Cain.

      Mir is a good gate keeper. He is an annoying dude. He is so opinionated.

      Didn’t he recently diss Overeem? Mir is really insecure.

      • phrankthetank

        Annoying opinionated dudes, yea, I can understand how people like that can get on your nerves

        • pooby

          Bwahahahaha! I like you Phrank.

  • mmachoman

    Frank Mir better have evolved significantly since the last time we saw him if he is to have any hope of getting the belt again.

    • Lesnardo

      He has no hope of getting the belt back. Pretty much JDS/OVereem/Cain have KOed Lesnar/Carwin who have KOed Mir.

      Mir is getting some buzz right now because Lesnar retired.

      I think the UFC is feeding Mir to Cain.

      • phrankthetank

        1st off, the “A beat B and B beat C so A will destroy C argument doesn’t really work” 2nd. Who KOed Carwin again? JDS couldn’t finish Carwin but knocked out Cain in 67 seconds.

        • Lesnardo

          You are retarded.

          A beats B, B beats C, therefore A beats C.
          This is what you call MMA math. It holds true in majority of the cases. It is not a golden rule but it is definitely solid evidence.

          Also slash “/” means OR not AND.


      • CharlieMarley

        Leonardo… I had to create an account to tell you you should no longer be able to talk mixed martial arts. Kill yourself slow with a butter knife and leave the debating to the adults.

      • rsnowbass

        Just like they did Jardine to Liddel? I’m taking Cain in this fight but I don’t think it’s going to be as one-sided as people on here are making it out to be.

        • rsnowbass


  • ultimatebrosky

    its too bad for mir that u can’t evolve ur chin…. ask andrei arlovski

    I would like to see mir winbut I don’t realistically see it happening

  • maddawgmar

    To say Mir will get knocked out in the first is not out of the realm of possibility. But to say he will never get to a title match is jus plain ignorant. This is MMA, anything can happen, just ask Matt Serra. Not saying Mir is a Serra in this fight. Their skills are a great mesh. Mir has crisper striking where Cain has KO power. Cain has great wrestling where Mir has great Jitz. Yes Mir has been KO’d but Cain has been rocked and KO’d too. The only wrestler that has dominated him on the ground was Lesnar, and he is way stronger than Cain. Carwin held him against the fence to unload, but he is way stronger than Cain. This fight is very interesting, that can end all way by both men. The least likely is Cain by submission. But anything can happen.

    • Lesnardo



  • trevor

    I hope Mir knocks the brown pride right out of Cain! The end. and Lesnardo shuts up! Gatekeeper …blah blah blah go play video games nerd!

    • Lesnardo



  • insane187288

    gentelmen we all have to realise this is a fight. Matt Sera Vs St Pierre. Nuff said. Mir has been shown to be the second best in his return. Any fight cant be taken care of by one punch and or one wrong move for a submission. What im getting at is if I had money I would totally be for Cain but im not going to bet on a fight that could go either way due to Frank being able to come up to the plate. Great fight!

  • Mir is un-listenable as a commentator. He doesn’t use double negatives, he is into triple negatives.
    I know many people don’t care to use English properly but some of us do. His use of the language is brutal and not up to say Ken Florian standards.
    As for the fight… this may answer the questions about either one. Can Brown Pride take a punch or deal with BJJ on the ground, or can Mir take a punch and deal with wrestling.
    I like the match up, as long as Mir isn’t the one commentating on it.

    • Lesnardo


  • matty

    Mir is a gatekeeper at best! I don’t even think Mir is a top 15 fighter. He broke big Nogs arm so what! He was rocked and almost ko’d by him. Every time the UFC puts a top 10 fighter in front of him he moves back down the short heavyweight ladder he beats one or two has beens or nobody’s and we talk title contender. He will get ko’d in the first by Cain.

    • Lesnardo

      Yeah, that second fight looked bad for Mir.

      We all know that Nog is way past his prime. Nog looked so awkward even in his win against Schaub…just punch drunk.

      And Nog drops Mir…lol!

  • dgs

    Mir is such a great person I always root for him, and will be doing so against Cain. If he can stuff the take downs he has a very good chance of winning. I don’t see anything special about Cain on the feet. Cain’s standup is better than some of the pure wrestlers in the UFC, but in a standing game I don’t see him having any advantages over Mir.

    • Lesnardo

      Cain’s standup technique wise is probably on par with Mir. But the punching power is different.

      Also, the KEY/MAIN difference between the two fighters is their ability to take punches.

      Mir has been KOed way too many times.

      This is exactly the same as 2 years ago when Mir bulked up, beat Kongo, and was hyping himself up for his fight against Carwin.