Former two-time UFC Heavyweight champion Frank Mir emerged victorious in a wild slugfest that headlined UFC Fight Night 71 live from San Diego on Wednesday 15th July.
Mir, (18-9 MMA, 16-9 UFC) knocked Todd Duffee (9-3 MMA, 3-2 UFC) out cold after just 73 seconds to claim his second straight upset win, and in doing so may have inserted himself into the title picture.
Duffee had previously stated he called out Mir in hopes of adding a signature win to his resume. Instead, he has given Mir another addition to his highlight reel, with the 13th stoppage win of his UFC career tying him at second in all-time company history.
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Both men came out hard and heavy, throwing caution to the wind with powerful strikes launched by both men. Amidst the frantic exchanges, Mir caught Duffee with a stiff counter left, knocking him immediately unconscious.
“I went out there and beat a young stud by doing what he does best, which is throw leather, throw explosive and throw hard. I fought a little emotional and I usually don’t do that. I try to fight craft, but I bit down on my mouth piece and swung for the fences.”
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Mir had a four-fight losing streak and was said to be contemplating retirement before his recent back-to-back “Performance of the Night” winning knockouts over Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva and Duffee.
“I think heavyweights mature later in life,” Mir told MMAjunkie.
“We come upon ourselves older. Hopefully I don’t have to answer anymore ‘am I going to retire?’ questions.”
UFC Vice President of Public Relations Dave Sholler told MMAjunki:
“Frank looked fantastic, we know he has made a new commitment to striking and we saw that tonight…the heavyweight division is really, really interesting right now."
Sholler's comments highlight how the promotion is taking notice of the work of former Heavyweight champions such as Mir and Andrei Arlovski.
Earlier in the night, Holly Holm cruised to a comfortable unanimous decision victory over Marion Reneau to remain undefeated in her MMA career (9-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) before admitting that UFC women’s Bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey is still her ultimate goal:
“She’s the one with the belt…you’re in this sport, that’s what you want. My goal is to be there otherwise I probably shouldn’t be doing this at all."