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WEC 42: Frank Mir on 'Phenomenal' Takeya Mizugaki vs. Jeff Curran

Former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir will be the color commentator for WEC 42 Sunday night on Versus, and all this week he's providing his insight into the WEC fights. Today I ask Mir about Takeya Mizugaki vs. Jeff Curran.

Michael David Smith: The last time we saw Takeya Mizugaki was in his loss to Miguel Torres at WEC 40, in one of the fights of the year. How do you think he matches up with Jeff Curran?
Frank Mir: I think that is a very exciting fight. Both guys have excellent hands. Jeff might try to be a little bit of a grappler in this fight, but I don't think it's going to go to the ground much. I think we're going to see a very explosive fight, with both guys going at it. I don't see this fight going to the ground or going the distance.

Were you surprised that Mizugaki was able to go the distance with Torres and win -- depending on which judge you ask -- either one or two rounds against Torres?
Yeah, I was surprised, to be honest with you. I knew Mizugaki was highly ranked going into that fight, but I think we were a little spoiled by Torres, and we thought he was just leaps and bounds ahead of everybody. But the fact that Mizugaki fought Torres in a Torres-like battle, standing there and trying to gun him down, that really impressed me. I think that's why Mizugaki improved his reputation in a lot of people's eyes, even though he lost the fight. If you can ever find victory in defeat, Mizugaki could make a strong case for it there.

There were criticisms of you on some MMA sites that you didn't give Mizugaki enough credit during his fight with Torres. Did you hear any of that, and do you think there's any truth to that?
Looking back on it, I can see why a person might perceive it that way. But, at the end of the day, Mizugaki didn't use new techniques. He was coming forward, throwing a lot of shots, and he was getting his face beaten up by Torres. And in the fifth round, I didn't think Mizugaki tried to win the fight. He did a great job, but he looked like he was going to be satisfied just to go the distance. He knew he was going to be behind on the scorecards, in a foreign country, fighting the champion, and yet Torres was the one in the fifth round who fought like he was behind. So that really impressed me, because you don't see a lot of champions doing that. A lot of champions in MMA are conservative when they're ahead going into the fifth round. So it wasn't that I wasn't giving Mizugaki credit. He is a phenomenal fighter, but what Miguel did impressed me even more.

Come back to MMA FanHouse Wednesday for Mir's thoughts on Dominick Cruz vs. Joseph Benavidez.

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