Former UFC heavyweight king Frank Mir is excited about making his professional boxing debut against Antonio Tarver on April 17.

Mir will square off against the former light-heavyweight champion on the undercard of Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren.

In an interview with MMA Junkie on Friday, Mir explained why he was crossing into a new sport at 41-years-old, he said.

“It’s a great opportunity for a challenge. I’ve always wanted to step in the boxing ring. As mixed martial artists, we always like challenging ourselves at the individual aspects of what makes our sport the decathlon of the martial arts world. Competing against someone who is a legitimate former world champion (does that).”

Mir believes he is in a “win-win” situation in his fight against Tarver.

“Realistically, this is a win-win for me because I’ve got nothing to lose,” Mir said. “I go out there, and even if I were to lose the match – and I intend on really trying to win this fight – win it early, I don’t know about going 10 rounds. I go the distance and look good, that’s a victory for mixed martial arts. I know what it’s like to be the guy defending your sport against and outsider coming in (like I did against Brock Lesnar). It’s really nerve-racking, so the stress is really all on his end.”

Mir hasn’t fought in MMA since October 2019 and it doesn’t seem like he plans to return to the sport anytime soon.

The heavyweight legend will try to prolong his competitive career by experimenting with new sports.

“Honestly, I would love to keep doing this,” Mir said. “I’m 41, and I’m having my own midlife crisis. My wife makes jokes about it all the time. Most guys go out there and get a girlfriend or a brand new Corvette to drive; I’m out there sitting going, ‘Hey, maybe I can go into boxing. Can I get into the K-1? What wrestling tournament can I get into?’ I’m trying to find these different ways, because I know my window of competition is closing on me.”

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A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.