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Old 07-02-2009, 06:54 PM
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Default Lesnar Unfazed by Mir's Striking

Mir was fighting a Zombie, lol

UFC champ Lesnar unfazed by Mir's striking
Tue, June 30, 2009


Don't count UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar among those impressed with Frank Mir's striking in his win over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.

Nogueira (31-5-1) had never been stopped prior to UFC 92 in December and had only been knocked down five times in his previous 36 mixed martial arts bouts. Mir, known more as a ground fighter than a striker, floored him three times in less than seven minutes en route to a dominant second-round TKO.

"Anybody's standup looks good when you're standing in front of a zombie," Lesnar told The Canadian Press on Tuesday. "Nogueira was in no shape to fight that night - and didn't fight.

"Anybody's standup's going to look good when you're fighting against a guy who looked like he was on his death bed to me."

UFC president Dana White said later Nogueira was battling a staph infection going into the Mir fight. There was also talk of a knee injury.

The 31-year-old Lesnar takes on Mir, a former heavyweight champion in his own right, on July 11 in the main event of UFC 100 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The two were originally slated to meet May 23 at UFC 98 but the fight was pushed back because of a knee injury to Mir (12-3).

The super-sized Lesnar, a six-foot-three behemoth who has to cut some 10 pounds to make the UFC's 265-pound heavyweight limit, has a score to settle with the 30-year-old Mir. The former NCAA amateur and pro wrestling champion lost his UFC debut to Mir at UFC 81 in February 2008. The frenetic fight only lasted 90 seconds and a rampant Lesnar probably dominated 85 of those, only to make a mistake and have his jiu-jitsu black belt opponent submit him via leg lock.

Lesnar (3-1) says he is a different fighter 17 months later.

"Plain and simple, Frank fought a wrestler the first time he fought Brock Lesnar. This time he's fighting a UFC heavyweight champion. That's the major difference."

In the interim, Lesnar battered former Pride veteran Heath Herring en route to a unanimous decision and won the title from 45-year-old Randy (The Natural) Couture.

The UFC 100 showdown ends a four-fighter heavyweight mini-tournament that involved Lesnar, Mir, Nogueira and Couture.

The victory over Nogueira netted the six-foot-three, 240-pound Mir the interim heavyweight championship. Nogueira had earned that lesser title with a victory over Tim Sylvia at UFC 81 - when Couture had been embroiled in a contract dispute with the UFC. With Couture out of the picture, the UFC wanted some sort of title for its heavyweights to go after.

After stopping Nogueira, Mir walked over to the side of the cage where Lesnar was sitting and said: "You've got my belt."

Prior to that Mir-Nogueira bout, Lesnar gave the interim title a degree of respect, saying the fight between the two belt-holders would decide once and for all who was the real champion.

He has since changed his view. There is no respect for Mir's title.

"After giving it a little more thought - and after this training camp - absolutely not," said Lesnar, who correctly calls it a "make-believe title" designed to keep fans interested during Couture's exile. "No, I don't think it holds any water."

NOTES - Lesnar is the 19th man to fight for a UFC title with less than 10 fights under his belt. Of those, only four succeeded in winning the championship: Lesnar, Couture, Mir and Mark Coleman. ... Lesnar and Couture both won the title in their fourth UFC fight. ... Nogueira and Couture are scheduled to meet at UFC 102 on Aug. 29 in Portland.
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