Mir on Boxing vs MMA Popularity
“Well obviously if you like contact sports previously like boxing, football and what not, we’re just an exciting sport. It’s one on one. You have to sit and eliminate the boxing hat. We have such a higher finishing rate as far as fights that finish without decisions that we don’t have the same controversies or the same boring, drawn out fights.
"I’m also a fan of boxing. My father is from Cuba so obviously boxing was big in my household. But the last couple of years, I’ve personally felt kinda disappointed when I watched boxing matches that were built up with great hype and I watch a twelve round decision where neither guy really risks anything. You can tell each guy doesn’t want to take any chances.
"That’s one thing we just don’t do here at the UFC. You see fighters all the time, whether they are holding the belt or the first time that they are fighting in the Octagon, guys taking risks and really putting on a great show. The atmosphere is completely different. I live in Vegas so I go to boxing matches all the time and I enjoy them. The atmosphere is completely different in a boxing match than it is in a UFC fight.”
Mir on Boxing vs MMA Safety
"Boxing, because of the extra padding in the gloves, it does mean you don't get cut as much, but a cut's not detrimental to a person's long-term health. The repeated trauma, taking shots, we don't have a standing eight-count in our sport that I think, in boxing, Wow, you get rocked, I'm going to stand you up and then you're going to try to continue on after eight seconds? You've already been dropped. Doesn't that mean you already suffered a concussion? And you're going to keep fighting?
"hat's why we have a better safety record than other combat sports."
Mir on Carwin's Striking
“I think standup as far as he’s a hard hitter, I would agree. He does punch hard so if I stood in the pocket with him, it’s always going to be a coin flip at that point. If I miss a shot and he lands it, it’s not gonna be a very nice night for me. At the same time he is still relatively new to the sport. He is a very explosive puncher, but very basic and very straight line.
"My last couple of fights, I’ve shown that I use a lot of angles, throw punches in different areas, and I keep myself out of harm by using footwork. On my feet, I feel comfortable there also as long as I fight intelligently and use the fact that I have a lot more experience and use the range to my advantage.”
Mir on boxer James Toney in MMA
“Obviously he has the hands and the boxing element of our sport, would be light years ahead of where a lot of guys would be starting off. James Toney is a world class boxer. I’ve always watched him box and been a huge fan of him since I even watched him fight Roy Jones in an unsuccessful bout and I still was a huge fan.
"There’s just so many elements to our sport that you have to acknowledge those. There’s even things in boxing that you can do that you can’t do in our sport because of the fact that the stance is different. You can’t stand with one leg so far forward ahead of the other leg because in our sport we’ll just reach down and grab your leg and you’ll go to the ground and the boxing element is removed completely.
"If he wants to use his boxing, stand in the pocket, slipping and punching and standing right in front of somebody making them miss, it’s a little more difficult because when we throw a punch and immediately clinch, there’s no referee to break the fight after the clinch. Like before the clinch would’ve been a rest in boxing. The minute we clinch, the fight is still going on in a very aggressive manner.
"He’d have to take up some of the grappling aspects and really try to work on avoiding the ground not because he can’t develop skills there but he would probably, I would assume, want to keep it as much as possible in boxing range.”
Listen to entire interview on ESPN 101 in St Louis with Bryan Burwell and Bob Stelton
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