The UFC today announced that former UFC heavyweight champions will collide in the cage this August as Josh Barnett makes his return to the Octagon to take on Frank Mir at UFC 164 on August 31 at Bradley Center in Milwaukee, WI, in what should be one of the blockbuster fights of the summer. This is an absolutely exceptional fight between two of the longest standing top-10 heavyweights in the world and I expect it to be extremely competitive. With that being said, it seems as though the public is a lot higher on Barnett these days then they are on Mir so I would expect that Barnett opens as a slight favorite, perhaps -130 to EVEN for Mir, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Barnett opens up higher or if the public bets his line up because the general feeling is Mir is a fade at this point even though he’s only been losing to top-five fighters himself. Both fighters are amazing on the ground but it’s possible the fight never hits the ground and it stays standing. If that’s the case, I do give the edge to Barnett, but barely. Mir isn’t a great striker by any means but Barnett is nothing to write home about either, and if the bettors think that Barnett has some huge striking advantage it’s possible Mir will get to a good enough number to make a play on him. I have a very slight lean towards Barnett in this fight but a Mir win would not surprise me at all. I’ll have to watch some more tape of both guys before I recommend a bet, but my bet will likely ultimately come down to what way the public takes the line. Guida vs. Mendes Also Added To UFC 164 The UFC also added a featherweight bout between top contenders Clay Guida and Chad Mendes to UFC 164. This could be a very exciting fight, but it could also be a snoozer depending on how both guys choose to fight. Because of all the public hype behind Mendes right now, I expect him to open as a sizeable favorite in this fight, probably in the -300 range with the comeback on Guida being +250. It’s an intriguing fight because although Guida is an awesome grinder who is great at getting the takedowns, Mendes has exceptional takedown defence and I see it being hard for Guida to get him down. That being said, Guida is going to have the size advantage in this fight so it’s possible he can get enough takedowns to score points and win a decision, but that’s a longshot. Instead, I see the fight taking place on the feet and although Guida has a solid chin and can take punches, Mendes is a way better striker and should pick him apart, although I highly doubt he scores a knockout. Again, I need to see the official betting line before I make a pick but I would definitely considering betting the “Fight goes the distance” prop because I see a decision either way in this fight. Krause vs. Stout On Tap For UFC 161 The UFC also announced that lightweight bout between Sam Stout and James Krause, who is making his UFC debut, will take place at UFC 161 after Isaac Vallie-Flagg pulled out with an injury. This should be a very exciting fight and I expect it to be very competitive. That being said, Stout is the veteran and he’ll likely be quite a decent-sized favorite, likely in the -200 range with Krause being +150, although he’ll have a much better chance of winning this fight than the public bettors give him.