The heavyweight division is a mess, in all of MMA. Bellator doesn’t really have any talent there worth noting. Strikeforce may have had better talent than the UFC but a woeful effort on the part of their management has really seen the steam knocked out of their heavyweight division, and our recent look at the pedigree of the UFC’s belt shows that the UFC’s talent pool needs some new blood. One of the UFC’s owners was tweeting this weekend about a potential Cain Velasquez versus Frank Mir match being in the works. So after attempting to recycle the aging Rodrigo Nogueira, whose comeback was derailed when Mir snapped his arm, we get a recycled Mir after it looked like he had faded from the title picture.
The real mystery here is what is happening with the most intriguing matchup that we have in the heavyweight division – Daniel Cormier versus Josh Barnett in the finals of Strikeforce’s Heavyweight tournament. The match was originally scheduled for March 2nd’s Strikeforce event, but was not given main event status because of Cormier’s physical status. The intriguing Ronda Rousey versus Miesha Tate women’s title fight was given main event status and the world was told to expect an update on the heavyweight fight.
Now a month has passed and Strikeforce has announced NOTHING. How did Cormier’s exams go? When will he be ready? When will the fight with Barnett be scheduled – for June? For November? No one knows, not even Strikeforce.
As for the UFC< they have welcomed back another re-tread in Fabrizio Werdum, and Werdum, who is coming off a victory over Roy Nelson, has been clamoring for a bout with Mir. Instead, they have opted to have Velasquez face Mir. This is a bad idea.
Cain Velasquez may be the top talent in the heavyweight division, and he is a former champion, who certainly is going to want a rematch. The smarter approach however, would be to ease Velasquez back after his long lay off, and get him 2 or 3 fights more. Remember, Velasquez is still young and he does have very little ring time, so he would certainly benefit from the seasoning’.
A Werdum-Mir match would have allowed the UFC to bump one of their many retreads down the ladder. Instead, they are running Velasquez into a fight with Mir, risking all the potential that Velasquez has. Mir is just the right type of physical/technique package that could send Velasquez to a second loss. And if Mir wins, is anyone really excited about seeing Frank go for the UFC title again? I am not…