Photo by Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
Frank Mir knows a golden opportunity when he sees one. The former UFC heavyweight champion wasted no time volunteering to take Alistair Overeem’s spot in the UFC 146 main event bout with Junior dos Santos, according to a statement sent out over email by his management team on Wednesday afternoon.
Less than two hours after Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer announced that Overeem had tested positive for an increased testosterone/epitestosterone ratio after a recent press conference, Mir tossed his hat in the ring with an offer to fight current UFC heavyweight champ dos Santos if Overeem is indeed ruled ineligible for the May 26 fight in Las Vegas.
"I would be excited if given the opportunity to compete for the UFC's heavyweight title at UFC 146 if the reports released earlier today regarding Alistair Overeem failing his 'A' sample drug test are true," Mir is quoted as saying in the statement.
"I have been fortunate to be able to fight in the UFC for more than a decade, and it is a dream of mine to become the first three-time heavyweight champion in the UFC. Being able to fight Junior Dos Santos would put me one step closer to that dream."
It’s not the first time Mir has played the role of the eager opportunist in the UFC. Following his brutal submission victory over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 140 in Toronto last December, Mir seized on rumors that Overeem might be ruled ineligible for his UFC 141 bout with Brock Lesnar later that same month, telling media members gathered for the post-fight press conference that he "wouldn’t mind" stepping in against his old foe Lesnar on only three weeks’ notice.
"I only fought a three-minute fight, so I'm feeling pretty good," Mir said at the time. "My wife might not be happy about Christmas but, eh, she can deal with it."
As it turned out, Overeem was granted a conditional license by the NSAC that allowed him to stay in the fight with Lesnar, so Mir’s services weren’t required. This time, however, it could be a different story.
Overeem’s title fight against dos Santos could be in jeopardy after he tested above a 10-1 T/E ratio in his recent drug test -- far above the acceptable 6-1 limit.
Mir is currently slated to fight former UFC champion Cain Velasquez on the UFC 146 main card, which features an all-heavyweight lineup. Velasquez recently told MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani that it was his understanding that the winner of that fight would receive a title shot. If the UFC decides to take Mir up on his offer, who knows exactly how those plans could change.
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