Former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir will be the color commentator for WEC 42 Sunday night on Versus, and all this week he'll be providing his insight into the WEC fights. Today I ask Mir about the main event, bantamweight champion Miguel Torres vs. Brian Bowles.
Michael David Smith: Let's start with Miguel Torres. Is he the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world?
Frank Mir: I believe so, right now, just because of the number of wins he has under his belt, his skill level and the way he approaches his fights. It's a hard argument to make. Georges St Pierre and Anderson Silva both have great skill sets, so to try to break them down and pick one best is kind of like splitting hairs, but the one thing I see with Miguel that I think I can make a strong argument for is his approach.
In his fight with Takeya Mizugaki, he was winning on points going into the fifth round, he had to know he was winning the fight on the judges' cards, but he still was going to try to finish the fight and kill him. He didn't just want to get an easy victory. All of the top four or five guys in that pound-for-pound conversation are extremely skilled, but I think his killer instinct puts him on top. Miguel Torres isn't about winning, he's about destroying the opponent in front of him.
Are there holes in Miguel's game?
Of course, every fighter has weaknesses. Miguel's wrestling might not be up to par with the rest of his game. He's a black belt in jiu jitsu and his striking is deadly, but the wrestling is an aspect of game where he could improve. But you can say that about any fighter.
How good a fighter is Brian Bowles? Does he have what it takes to exploit those holes and beat Torres?
Brian Bowles is undefeated and he hasn't shown too many weaknesses. His athletic ability is top-notch, which goes a long way in fighting, to have that athletic platform to start from. His striking is sound. His wrestling is sound. I don't know if he's the best wrestler in the world, but I think his wrestling might be better than Miguel's, and that could be the chink in Miguel's armor that Bowles can zero in on.
I've seen Bowles and Torres standing next to each other, and it's striking to me how much taller and longer Torres is -- just like Torres is taller and longer than almost every bantamweight. How hard will it be for Bowles to overcome the reach advantage?
It's certainly something Bowles has to overcome, but how hard that is depends on how well prepared he is. A lot of fighters I don't think realize it and identify just how much of an advantage Torres has. I think Bowles probably does realize it and knows that Miguel is a tall, tall bantamweight. But it's more than just being tall, it's knowing how to fight tall. Miguel knows how to use his jab. He has an excellent jab and an excellent right hand. And that's a big puzzle for Brian Bowles, to overcome that height disadvantage.
Come back to MMA FanHouse Tuesday for Mir's thoughts on Jeff Curran vs. Takeya Mizugaki.