Due to a 2016 failed drug test, former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir isn’t eligible to competed until April 2018, but when he returns, he’ll take on a man many consider to be the very best heavyweight of all-time, as he’s set to take on Fedor Emelianenko in the first round of the Bellator heavyweight grand prix tournament.
Recently speaking on the fight, Mir said that he’s aiming to take out the ‘biggest and the baddest’ in the tournament:
“It’s like being a big game hunter,” Mir told MMAjunkie Radio. “I don’t want to go out there and shoot a little quail. You want to take out the biggest and the baddest.”
At 38-years-old, Mir is just 2-6 in his last eight bouts to date, but he remains one of the most dangerous submission artists the heavyweight division has ever seen. He also appears to be rejuvenated and eager to compete, as he claims that being sidelined wasn’t easy to deal with it:
“It’s nice to be a fighter again,” Mir said. “A little bit of limbo was the last year-and-a-half, not having a fight scheduled and not being able to participate. I finally get to fight again. It’s something that, when you don’t get to do what you love, it makes it even worse.”
Aside from Mir and Emelianenko, the tournament will also include Chael Sonnen, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Ryan Bader, Muhammed Lawal, Roy Nelson and Matt Mitrione.
The tournament is expected to start with a bout between Sonnen and Jackson in January. Then, Bader will face off with Lawal and Nelson will meet Mitrione.
Who are you picking to win the tournament and be crowned the Bellator heavyweight champion?