UFC Fight Night 71: The Heavyweight Division has a Problem
After UFC Fight Night 71, the UFC’s Heavyweight Division is in even more of a mess than before. Somehow the heavyweight division has found itself transported back in time, Andrei Arlovski, Mirko Cro Cop, and now Frank Mir all find themselves in the winner’s column after beating younger opponents. Now with talks of Fedor Emelianenko coming out of retirement what should fans think of these veterans making comebacks?
Personally, I believe their names carry more weight than their abilities. Mirko Cro Cop was being manhandled for the first two rounds before he caught Gabriel Gonzaga with an elbow that ultimately lead to a TKO victory. Arlovski might be a notch above these other vets because he went to war with Travis Browne and came away with the victory despite eating some good shots. Mir might have defeated Todd Duffee in 74 seconds but that was a sloppy minute and fourteen seconds of a fight. First of all, Mir came into the fight in perhaps the worst shape he’s even been on fight nights, if your physique inspires this photo from your boss, you really lose credibility. Now in the actual fight itself, more than anything Todd Duffee showed just how little he has grown as a fighter. This is his second stint in the UFC, he is now 29-years-old and he’s got the body of a super hero. Todd Duffee is the definition of a glass cannon, he’s going to knock you out in the first or you’re going to knock him out. In this fight with Frank Mir, Duffee threw all technique out the window and just started swinging wildly. In a weight class where all fighters have knockout power this is a recipe for getting laid out. Frank Mir capitalized on that. Mir is now on a two-fight win streak but does he really stand a chance at winning the title? To put it bluntly, no. None of these vets have the chin, stamina or speed to get to the very top of the division. Yes they’ll win some fights but once they go against the Junior Dos Santos and Fabricio Werdums of the world they’ll get worked over.
They should be relegated to the role of crowd pleasers, fights thrown into cards that need a name to draw fans. But with the heavyweight division being so thin with talent, it wouldn’t be surprising if one of these guys found their way into a title shot, where fans will have to suffer seeing their favorite old guy put to sleep on the mat. If you think these old vets are legit, feel free to tell me so in the comments.
Michael Gomez covers MMA for MyFantasySportsTalk, you can follow him on Twitter @MichaelGom3
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