UFC Fight Night 71: Mir vs Duffee

Saturday, July 15th 10:00 p.m. ET
San Diego, California

Todd Duffee attempts to extend his winning streak to four matches when he takes on Frank Mir, loser of four of his past five bouts, at UFC Fight Night 71.

Mir was a force when he started his UFC career back in 2001 and was the eventual heavyweight champion when he took out Tim Sylvia at UFC 48 in 2004. Since then he has earned an interim heavyweight championship and fought for the belt once, but is well past his glory days with defeats in four of his last five fights. In that time he was knocked out twice with the other two going to decision, but did bounce back most recently with a Performance of the Night as he knocked out Antonio Silva during the first round in February. He has won just once since 2011 and, despite being a big name in the sport, is at the tail end of his career at the age of 36. Duffee is seven years younger than his opponent for this match and has been the equivalent of a home run hitter in baseball with all nine of his wins coming by knockout while his two losses were also via knockout. Eight of his wins came in the first round, including each of the last three, two of which were in the UFC. In the two fights since coming back to the UFC, Duffee has made quick work of both Philip De Fries and Anthony Hamilton, finishing them both off in less than 2:30 minutes and barely let things start against Hamilton at UFC 181; ending it in 33 seconds. The 29-year-old out of the University of Georgia stands at 63 and looks to be the future of the heavyweight division.

Mir used to be the talk of the town in the heavyweight division, but he has gone downhill fast and is now struggling to get anything going. He is coming off a dominant performance against Silva in which he out-struck him 10-1 and finished the fight in 1:40, but overall is landing just 2.18 significant strikes per minute at 47percent accuracy. His opponents have unloaded on him to the tune of 3.97 significant strikes per minute at a ridiculous 63percent accuracy and in his four matches before his last win, Mir had landed a mere 53 significant strikes compared to 206 strikes against him; including a very poor performance against Alistair Overeem where he was out-struck 62-3 in three rounds. Overall he averages 2.20 takedowns per 15 minutes in the octagon, but in his past five bouts has just one following two fights when he had seven total takedowns. He has defended against the takedown 54percent of the time, but has not hit the mat since facing Lesnar in 2009. Submissions are something that he looks to perform often with 2.3 submissions attempted per 15 minutes and nine of his 17 career victories have come by that tactic. Mir is past his prime and will struggle to keep up with the younger fighter.

Duffee makes things look easy in his time in the octagon, and has used aggressive attacks to get in 5.44 significant strikes per 15 minutes. His accuracy is not too impressive, though, with 34percent of those attempts landing as he looks for quantity over quality, searching for the perfect unexpected punch to knock out his opposition. Over his five career UFC fights, Duffee is taking just 1.79 significant strikes per minute as he deflects 61percent of the attempts and has gotten in 28 hits compared to just nine in his last two times out. His style ends there as he does not look to take anyone down or perform a submission as evidenced by having zero of each in his time in the UFC. He also tends to stay upright with a takedown defense of 90percent as he was dropped by De Fries once before knocking him out in just over two minutes. Duffees fighting style is very straight forward, but effective, so it will be interesting to see if his aggressiveness can take out a veteran like Mir.