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UFC 169: Mir vs. Overeem
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Published: 2/1/2014  at  2:49:00 AM
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UFC 169: Mir vs. Overeem

Saturday, February 1 10:30 p.m. ET
Newark, NJ

Frank Mir (16-8) vs. Alistair Overeem (36-13)

Heavyweight bout
Line: Overeem -375, Mir +285

An intriguing matchup looms in the heavyweight class at Saturday's UFC 169, as Frank Mir and Alistair Overeem could very well be fighting for their jobs.

Overeem is coming off two consecutive losses, losing in convincing knockout fashion both times to Travis Browne and Antonio Silva. Overeem has had a difficult career since his last victory over Brock Lesnar on Dec. 30, 2011. At that time, he appeared on his way to earning a title shot and becoming a household name in the UFC. However, he appears to understand what is on the line for his career, as he comes into this fight leaner and in as good of conditioning as he has been in a long time. The losing streak for Mir has been even worse, as he has lost three consecutive fights, including a first-round knockout to Josh Barnett on Aug. 31. While there was some controversy in that loss, Barnett was well on his way to finishing the fight. With so much potentially on the line for both of these fighters, look for emotions and the energy to be extremely high. In the end, OVEREEM will get a big win.

Overeem has 36 career victories, with 19 being by way of submission. He also has 15 knockouts and two other wins by decisions. Overeem has a huge advantage when it comes to landing significant strikes, where he averages 3.72, compared to just 2.38 for Mir. He will also have another big advantage when it comes to size, where he will have a 25-pound advantage. Overeem grabbed the UFC attention with his incredible ability to put on a big show. Mir is a terrific grappler, but Overeem does an outstanding job of defending against the takedown (77%). He is coming into this match very confident and saying all the right things about his training camp, but Overeem must prove that he is more than just talk. While Mir has struggled in his past few fights, he is still a prideful fighter that has enjoyed a lot of success in this sport.

Of his 16 career wins, Mir has nine victories by submission. He also has three victories by knockout and four by decision. Mir will have a takedown advantage in this fight, with a 2.38 takedown average, compared to 1.92 for Overeem. Mir has experienced some great moments in the sport, defeating guys such as Brock Lesnar and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Mir has struggled in the past few fights of being able to keep up with his opponent's speed. This matchup has the potential to be an incredible fight because both guys are fighting for their careers.

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