(“You mean Soa Palelei, right? No? Aw crap.” / Photo via Getty)
In what might be the most obvious win-or-get-fired match in UFC history, a bout between struggling heavyweights Alistair Overeem and Frank Mir has just been added to UFC 167: St. Pierre vs. Hendricks, the promotion’s 20th-anniversary show slated for November 16th in Las Vegas.
We’re less than a week removed from Mir’s first-round TKO loss to Josh Barnett at UFC 164 — which followed two previous losses to Daniel Cormier and Junior Dos Santos — and it seems almost cruel that the UFC will be throwing him back into the fire less than three months later…especially against an opponent who certainly carries the potential to beat him up. This ain’t exactly a rebound fight; it’s like the UFC’s accountants need to know by the end of the calendar year whether they’re keeping Murr on their ledgers or not.
Of course, Overeem finds himself in the exact same situation. The Dutch striker is 0-2 in the UFC since being forced to sit out most of 2012 due to a PED-related licensure suspension, and his job security was by no means guaranteed after he suffered his second-straight knockout loss against Travis Browne at UFC Fight Night 26. But with this booking, he’ll be given another chance to prove that he’s not one of the UFC’s biggest hype-busts of all time. Your predictions on this one? And how long before the loser shows up in Bellator?
Aside from the welterweight title fight main event and this latest heavyweight addition, UFC 167 will also feature Chael Sonnen vs. Rashad Evans, Rory MacDonald vs. Robbie Lawler, and Josh Koscheck vs. Tyron Woodley.