UFC Fight Night 71 Fight Breakdown: Todd Duffee vs. Frank Mir

todd-duffee The main event of UFC Fight Night 71 is a five-round heavyweight bout between Todd Duffee and Frank Mir. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Duffee is a -190 favorite (bet $190 to win $100) while Mir is a +165 underdog (bet $100 to win $165). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Duffee at -175 and Mir at +135, and slight action has come in on the favorite Duffee. I lean towards Duffee to get a stoppage victory in this fight and thus agree with him being the favorite. Here’s why. Duffee (9-2) is one of the heaviest hitters in the UFC heavyweight division. The 29-year-old American is 3-1 in the UFC with knockout wins over Phil De Fries, Anthony Hamilton and Tim Hague, with a KO loss to Mike Russow. Duffee is a headhunter. He is not trying to fool anyone with his game. He looks to get in there and knock his opponents out, with all nine of his victories coming via T/KO, including eight of those wins coming in round one. He has only lost twice in his career, the shocker KO loss to Russow and a knockout loss to Alistair Overeem in DREAM when Overeem was at the top of the weight class. Duffee comes from a wrestling background and is very difficult to take down. He will look to sprawl and brawl and knock his opponents out in every fight, and with his speed and athleticism he’s almost always able to do that. The problems with Duffee and his chin and cardio. He’s been knocked out a couple times in brutal fashion and he gasses bad as the fight goes on. Still, with the amount of KO power he has early, it’s hard to pick against him when he takes on a chinny veteran like Mir, and that’s why you see Duffee as the favorite in this matchup. Mir (17-9) is the former UFC heavyweight champion and is overall one of the top heavyweight fighters of all time. The 36-year-old American has been fighting in the UFC since 2001 and has accumulated a 16-9 record during that time with wins over the likes of Bigfoot Silva, Brock Lesnar, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Roy Nelson, Mirko Cro Cop and Cheick Kongo. Mir is a well-rounded fighter, but his best skill is his submissions. He has an incredible ground game and has submission wins over some of the top heavyweights in the world. He also has some underrated knockout power on the feet, and his wrestling is solid as well for the most part. Having said all of that, Mir is on the last legs of his career. Yes, he is coming off of a knockout win over Bigfoot which was impressive, but prior to that he had lost four in a row and was looking like he was close to retirement. His chin has been checked many times in his career and he’s been knocked out seven times overall, and his cardio has been questionable as well. He’s still a dangerous guy, but at 36 you have to wonder how much he has left in the tank, and that’s why, despite a more impressive resume, he’s the underdog to Duffee in this fight. Duffee has more power, he’s faster and more athletic, and he’s a lot younger. Mir has some power himself, but his chin is a huge question mark at this point of his career and he isn’t getting any younger. Duffee’s chin worries me but overall I just feel like he’s going to win this fight via KO, probably in the first round, and maybe even in the first minute of the fight. Of course, if Duffee doesn’t get a quick knockout he may gas as the fight goes on and Mir could finish him either on the ground or on the feet, but I don’t think it’s that likely. I just don’t think beating Bigfoot says much about Mir being revitalized or anything like that, and I actually feel like the line is a bit short before Mir earned that upset win. I just feel like Duffee is on another level when it comes to the striking, so I like him to get the job done here, and even at -190 I will most likely be making a play on him after I see how they match up size wise at the weigh ins.

Written by Adam Martin.

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