(‘Poor bastard never stood a chance.’)
Frank Mir says it’s important for a fighter to be honest with himself. Judging from his conversation with Michael David Smith at MMA Fanhouse, however, it seems more like he thinks it’s important to be honest with himself some of the time, when it’s convenient to do so.
Despite the fact that Mir’s bout with Brock Lesnar seemed to be going against him in the early minutes, he’s positive that he’d win a rematch. Really positive:
"Brock Lesnar will never be able to beat me because he has no submission skills," Mir told me. "What’s he going to do, knock me out? No one has never knocked me cold. What’s he going to do, arm bar me? No way. He is powerful. He is big. But martial arts isn’t filled with guys from the NFL. Lesnar had to grab the cage not to get taken down by Randy Couture, who’s 220 pounds. Lesnar isn’t the phenom that everyone makes him out to be. He started at 30. Have you ever seen a boxer start at 30 and become a world champion?"
I’m not sure what Mir means by “no one has never knocked me cold,” but a quick look at his record reveals three TKO losses. One of them was in 2006 against Brandon Vera, who hasn’t won a fight by TKO since. Another was to jiu-jitsu specialist Marcio “Pe de Pano” Cruz, which Mir describes as his “pussiest moment.”
But whenever Mir talks about Nogueira and his chances in that fight, it really doesn’t sound like he’s quite as confident.
He told MDS that he’s been watching Nogueira’s old fights lately, and described him as “a great martial artist.” His plan seems to be to win a decision, since even Mir can’t talk himself into believing that he can really finish Nogueira, who he says would beat Fedor Emelianenko in a bout with no time limit.
And how would Mir do against Fedor? Here comes that honesty again:
"Fedor’s the best heavyweight in the world," Mir told me. "I hope one day I could fight him and do well, but right now he’s better than I am. As a martial artist you have to be truthful about yourself so you can approach your training properly and get better. Fedor has great killer instinct, he’s tough, he’s strong. If I fought him I’d try to catch him in a submission, but I don’t know if Fedor can be beaten. He’s the best heavyweight."
The good news is Mir will probably never have to find out whether he’s right.