(Look, Roy, we’re all big Harry Potter fans, but this Rubeus Hagrid obsession of yours is going a little far.)
Like that of current light heavyweight champ Jon Jones, former UFC heavyweight champ Brock Lesnar seems to be the subject of much debate amongst the MMA community. Not only was his heart called into question following his UFC 141 loss to Alistair Overeem, but in light of recent events, even the legitimacy of his title reign has seemingly been written off by some fans of the sport and wiped from the collective memories of others. Meanwhile, the hardcore conspiracy theorists claim that Lesnar’s run was nothing more than a genius ploy by Vince McMahon to boost Lesnar’s popularity before looping him back into the WWE. He’s a polarizing figure to say the least.
You know what? If Brock belongs in the hall of fame, so do I. It’s not that hard to win the title when it’s set up that way for you. Pretty much [a silver platter]. After Dave Herman, I guess I get a title shot. Interim! Because someone’s gonna get hurt.
Anyway, join us after the jump for Nelson’s full interview with Helwani, in which he also discusses his diet (of course), returning to his Kung-Fu roots, as well as his (and every fighters) gripes with his pay rate.
Dos Santos made his UFC debut almost four years ago at UFC 90, and three days before the fight Dana White posted footage of JDS hitting mits on his online video blog. Dos Santos’s hands looked incredible, and suddenly money came pouring in on the heavy underdog to beat Fabricio Werdum, which he did in devastating fashion. Since then, Dos Santos has put together the best resume in UFC Heavyweight history, destroying everyone in his path. So, is Mir going to be just another notch on JDS’s belt, or will JDS have an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon Sunday morning? Join me as I break down each fight on UFC 146′s main card, and don’t forget to come back to CagePotato tomorrow night for our liveblog of the event.
They say that styles make fights, and Saturday night’s heavyweight championship is going to be a clash between two men who are the best in the division at their chosen styles. Junior Dos Santos is so confident in his boxing skills that he says he could hang with the Klitschko brothers with three months’ training, and Frank Mir’s jiu-jitsu is so good that he broke Minotauro Nogueira’s arm after Nogueira had Mir teetering on unconsciousness. Both of these men have a wealth of Octagon experience, but neither man has ever fought into the championship rounds of a fight. That shouldn’t be an issue Saturday night, however, for this fight will probably end well before the final bell.
For Dos Santos, the game plan is simple: keep this fight on the feet. Dos Santos’ belief in his hands has to be at an all-time high, as he’s coming off his knockout of previously undefeated former champion Cain Velasquez in 64 seconds. If JDS can control the Octagon against Mir and use his superb counter-punching, I can see him finishing Mir early. Dos Santos has very quick hands for a heavyweight, and his uppercut is devastating. Just one counter hook or uppercut, and it could be lights out for Mir.
(Word has it JDS hits so hard that Frank Mir fainted shortly after this photo was snapped.)
Just a reminder, Potato Nation, that the weigh-ins for tomorrow’s UFC 146 card are going down tonight starting at 7 p.m. ET. Because we “love” you the way a man “loves” the prostitute he just kicked out of his hotel room, we’ll be hosting a live stream of the event below. At least one of us will be trolling the comment section and looking for a fight, so be sure to join us if you’re into that sort of thing.
Unfortunately, last Tuesday’s UFC on FUEL: Zombie vs. Poirier card all but completely derailed our recent run of luck with the Gambling Enabler (aside from the decision to purchase some Bud Light Platinums to celebrate another beautiful McKenzietine bet), but hopefully this weekend’s UFC 146 event, which features an all heavyweight main card for the first time in UFC history will help get things back on track. So without further adieu, may we present to you the tasty betting lines, brought to you courtesy of BestFightOdds, along with our brilliant/equally insane advice below.
(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 bothsides 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.
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…
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…