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Video: ‘UFC Primetime–Dos Santos vs Mir’ Episode 2


(Video: YouTube/420FriendlyMMAFan)

We’ve still got a week to go before our heavyweight title fight at UFC 146, but all of the excitement already has people losing their damn minds. Frank Mir and Junior Dos Santos will clash to determine who is the ‘baddest man on the planet’…at least for another 3-4 months until he inevitably loses the title to the next challenger. Enough dilly-dallying, let’s get to this week’s installment of UFC Primetime.

 

“Frank was very self-destructive. Drugs, alcohol. I think Frank was pretty much intoxicated for a whole year-and-a-half of his life. It was depression and then falling into a deeper spiral.” Mir’s wife, describing his life after the motorcycle wreck that nearly ended his fighting career, which sounds uncannily like the life of most CagePotato contributors.

More highlights after the jump.

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UFC 146 Shakeup: Is the New Heavyweight Lineup Better, Worse, or Much Worse?


(Let’s be honest, you’d pay to watch these three knuckleheads do *anything*.)

As Danga pointed out yesterday, injuries and surprise drug tests have led to all five of UFC 146‘s main card bouts being altered since they were first announced, which puts “Dos Santos vs. Mir” right up there with MMA’s most cursed events of all time. But let’s be fair — the UFC originally promised us ten aggressive heavyweights bashing the hell out of each other, and they’re still giving us just that. So is UFC 146 a rag-tag bunch of scab-fights, or a compelling lineup in itself? Let’s break it down…

Original main event: Junior dos Santos vs. Alistair Overeem
Current main event: Junior dos Santos vs. Frank Mir
Advantage: Even. Luckily, our schizophrenic contributor Josh Hutchinson has already presented both sides of this issue, and I’m leaning towards the idea that Mir as a main-event replacement isn’t a total disaster. At first, we had the two best heavyweight strikers in MMA slugging it out for supremacy. Now, we have…well, who knows? Mir’s brilliant ground game opens up a whole new set of outcomes for this one. And isn’t MMA at its best when it’s chaotic and unpredictable? (I know, some of you just watch for the big muscles, but I’m a true fan, okay bro?)

Original co-main event: Cain Velasquez vs. Frank Mir
Current co-main event: Cain Velasquez vs. Antonio Silva
Advantage: Original. And I only say that because Velasquez vs. Mir felt like less of a squash match. Bigfoot really could have used a softer landing in the Octagon; making his UFC debut in a pay-per-view co-main event against a juggernaut ex-champ like Velasquez smells like serious trouble for the Brazilian, who already failed a chin-test against Daniel Cormier in September.

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Video: ‘UFC Primetime–Dos Santos vs Mir’ Episode 1

(Video via IronForgesIron.com)

It’s not the match we were promised, but it’s the one we’re going to watch. We’re only weeks away from UFC 146 and the heavyweight title bout between Junior Dos Santos and Frank Mir. In addition to the twelve pounds of gold at stake, we are witnessing a former champion’s quest to return to the top of his division and the familiar story arc of redemption and payback for a fallen master. There’s also a shooting range and lots of big guns. Whichever strikes your fancy, this Primetime comes correct.

 

Things open up with Junior Dos Santos’ mentor, Big Nog, showing up at his gym in Salvador, Brazil. The surprise appearance provides an emotional boost to the young champion.

 

“It wasn’t pain. I was very disappointed.” – Big Nog, on having his arm snapped by Frank Mir. It’s easy to write this off as a mistranslation, but English or Portuguese, it doesn’t matter; Minotauro doesn’t know the definition of pain in any language.

More highlights after the jump.

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Why Frank Mir vs. Junior Dos Santos Is the Best-Case Scenario for UFC 146


(In defense of Dana’s flip flop, who could say no to that face?)

By Josh Hutchinson

As some of you may remember, I recently attempted to make a case for why Alistair Overeem vs. Junior Dos Santos had to happen at UFC 146, testosterone-levels be damned. And though that fight didn’t quite pan out, we’ll instead be treated to an even better fight that evening in Frank Mir vs. Junior Dos Santos (assuming that no other weird shit happens beforehand). That’s right, I said even better. “But you just tried telling us why the UFC needs to keep Overeem vs. Dos Santos,” I hear you screaming. To that extent I have two retorts. The first being that apparently my hypocrisy knows no bounds. The second being that a quick look at Frank Mir vs. any of the other potential replacements makes the case loud and clear. Take for instance the man that Mir is officially replacing…

Alistair Overeem

Yes, Overeem and Dos Santos would have been an epic slugfest, with a near-guarantee of someone being knocked stupid, but if you look at the quality of opponents the two men have faced in recent years, the nod clearly goes to Mir. Since moving up to heavyweight full time, Overeem has compiled a record of 12-1-1, which while sounding impressive, is actually rather deceiving. The majority of the fighters he beat in those twelve wins resemble less of a contender list, and more of a “MMA Fighters: Where Are They Now?” list. I of course am talking about guys like Paul Buentello, Tony Sylvester, James Thompson, Brett Rogers, you get the point. Frank Mir on the other hand, has been wading through the UFC’s heavyweight elites since UFC 34 back in 2001, picking up big name wins like Tim Sylvia (before he was a joke), Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (2x), Cheick Kongo, and others. Besides there is still a great chance of seeing someone get knocked the hell out. We all know Dos Santos likes to do it, and if you ask guys like Cro Cop and the aforementioned Nogueria, Mir likes to dabble as well.

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UFC 146 Injury Switcheroo: Roy Nelson Now Facing Dave Herman, Jamie Varner Returns Against Edson Barboza


(Just don’t come between Dave and his cubs.)

A pair of injuries have led to even more changes to the already chaotic UFC 146 lineup. As confirmed last night, heavyweight Gabriel Gonzaga has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled fight against Roy Nelson, and will be replaced by Dave Herman, who suffered a TKO loss to Stefan Struve in his last Octagon appearance. This is the second opponent switch for Nelson, who was originally supposed to face Antonio Silva on the “Dos Santos vs. Mir” card.

Meanwhile in the prelims, lightweight contender Evan Dunham is out of his fight against undefeated rising star Edson Barboza, and will be replaced by former WEC champ Jamie Varner. Since exiting the WEC after going 0-3-1 in 2010, Varner has won three of four fights outside the Zuffa fold, most recently stopping Drew Fickett in 40 seconds at XFC 16. However, all of Varner’s recent fights have come at 160-170 pounds, and one of those matches resulted in a loss to Dakota Cochrane, of all people. Will Varner be at a disadvantage trying to make 155 again on short notice? Will it even matter, considering that Barboza vs. Varner is the biggest UFC squash match of the year?

UFC 146 goes down May 26th at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The current (but probably not final) lineup is after the jump…

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UFC 146 Heavyweight Shuffle, Part 2: Nelson vs. Gonzaga, Del Rosario vs. Miocic Added to Main Card


(I’ve met some ugly chicks on PlentyofFish before, but Angie was a new low for me. And she looked even worse with her clothes off.)

Fun fact: Alistair Overeem’s withdrawal from UFC 146 has now resulted in six fighters on the main card getting their opponents switched a month out from the fight. (Only the Mark Hunt vs. Stefan Struve bout has been completely unaffected.) In the latest edition of “Dos Santos vs. Mir” musical chairs, Roy Nelson gets a new opponent, and an undefeated heavyweight prospect comes in to fill the gap.

— With his original opponent Antonio Silva now facing Cain Velasquez, Roy Nelson’s new dance-partner on May 26th will be Gabriel Gonzaga. “Napao” is coming off his successful UFC return against Edinaldo Oliveira in Rio, and was originally slated to kick off the UFC 146 pay-per-view against 11-0 Strikeforce vet Shane Del Rosario. Now it’ll be Gonzaga vs. Big Country, a battle of BJJ black belts with knockout power. We can dig that.

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Alistair Overeem Releases Statement on UFC 146 Withdrawal; Blames Anti-Inflammatory Medication for Elevated Testosterone Levels


(Photo courtesy of Heavy.com)

Alistair Overeem has finally broken his silence on his failed drug screening earlier this month. Here’s what the UFC heavyweight contender had to say in a release distributed this morning by Authentic Sports Management:

“To my friends and fans,

I am deeply saddened to announce that on Friday, April 20, I respectfully withdrew from the May 26 event so that I can request a continuance until my situation with the Nevada State Athletic Commission is resolved.

I cannot express how sorry I am to the Commission, Junior Dos Santos, the fans, the owners and employees of the UFC, my friends and family and anyone else who this has affected.

I absolutely do not believe in, nor do I use performance-enhancing drugs. I am a clean fighter and I will do whatever it takes to prove this to everyone.

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UFC 146 Heavyweight Shuffle: Cain Velasquez vs. Antonio Silva Confirmed as Co-Headliner


(“So this ‘acromegaly‘ shit…do they carry it at GNC?”)

When Frank Mir was called up to replace Alistair Overeem in UFC 146‘s main event, former heavyweight champ Cain Velasquez was briefly left without an opponent on the card. But over the weekend, Dana White announced that Antonio Silva will be stepping up to replace Mir against Velasquez. The fight will serve as the co-main event for UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir, which goes down May 26th in Las Vegas.

Antonio Silva will be making his UFC debut against Velasquez, and hasn’t competed since his knockout loss to Daniel Cormier in the semi-finals of Strikeforce’s heavyweight tournament last September. As for Silva’s original opponent Roy Nelson, Big Country is still expected to remain on the card though a replacement opponent hasn’t been named yet. The current lineup for UFC 146 is after the jump…

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The Rallies Are Over: Frank Mir to Fight Junior Dos Santos at UFC 146


Why yes, I do like Huey Lewis and The News… Props: Las Vegas Sun

The speculation has officially ended. After ruling out Frank Mir, Cain Velasquez and Mark Hunt as potential replacements for Alistair Overeem to fight heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos at UFC 146, Dana White has officially announced his pick. Late last night, Dana White sent out a tweet confirming that Overeem’s replacement will be none other than…Frank Mir.

Huh. How about that?

While we’re all sure that there’s a reasonable explanation for Alistair Overeem’s suspiciously high 14:1 testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio, the UFC aren’t taking any chances. Rather than waiting for Overeem to meet with the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Tuesday, “The Demolition Man” has been removed from the card entirely. Draw your own conclusions.

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‘UFC on FUEL 2: Gustafsson vs. Silva’ Analysis: Worth the Wait

By Elias Cepeda


(I have seen the future of Swedish MMA and it is pale, polite and packs a nasty uppercut)

No one really disappointed in the UFC’s first ever event in Sweden Saturday. Swedish headliner Alexander Gustafsson won an entertaining and technical stand-up striking battle against Thiago Silva. For his part, Silva was coming off of a one-year suspension from a failed drug test and was a late replacement for Antonio Rogerio Nogueira but found success in spots throughout the fight and never stopped pushing the pace and coming forward, no matter how much damage he took.

It’s always fun to see what crowds in new UFC territory are like and the Swedish fans proved to be a pleasing combination. Think the soccer chants of British and Brazilian fans with the polite appreciation of Japanese fans (but slightly louder). When one of their own won, they roared. When one of theirs lost, they applauded the victor for their honest effort. Old dad was on the scene last week and did a great job writing about Swedish attitudes.

As he wrote, Silva was initially one of the few people to get booed in Sweden. But that had more to do with his assumed steroid use than his nationality. And by the end of his strong-willed battle against Gustafsson, the Swedish fans cheered Silva for his aggression.

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