Two all-time great heavyweights collide in a co-main event battle this weekend.
While it might not have the heavyweights championship implications that some other fights have had recently, does not mean the fight between Frank Mir and Josh Barnett does offer anything for the mixed martial arts fan.
Having first been on the same card way back at UFC 36, the pair fight for the first after a lead-up filled with heated words full of intent.
Barnett has not been seen in the UFC for around a decade after leaving to spend time in Japan as a fighter and an professional wrestler.
After originally declining to sign with the UFC again, ‘The Warmaster’ put pen to paper earlier this year in May with his first fight under the promotion’s banner coming this weekend against Mir.
The pair can lay claim to being two of the best true American heavyweights ever seen in the UFC, with Barnett racking up a pro record of 32 wins from 38 fights with 27 by way of stoppage in comparison to Mir, who has 16 wins from 23 fights, 12 of which did not go to the judges.
There is not much between the pair statistically either, with the few advantages Barnett has over Mir is in takedown accuracy.
While Mir attempts more per round, to try and bring his excellent submission game into a fight, Barnett is far more effective in getting the fight to the ground, leading his opponent 75 per cent to just 46 per cent in this category.
That is where Mir has had problems in recent fights when he has come up against accomplished wrestlers, with his last bout against Daniel Cormier a prime example.
Barnett will look for a takedown early and attempt to control top position as he will try and grind out a points victory or by way of ground-and-pound.
Mir will need to bring much-improved cardio into the fight is he stands a chance of outlasting Barnett, with the 34-year-olds conditioning being questioned after the Cormier fights, despite reports of an excellent camp in the lead-up.