Frank Mir came into UFC Fight Night 61 needing an impressive win to save his job.
He got one.
Mir connected on a left hook to put away favourite and hometown hero Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva minutes into the first round.
Welcome back to The Crossfire.
TSN 2 MAIN CARD
SANTIAGO “GENTE BOA” PONZINIBBIO VS SEAN “TARZAN” STRICKLAND
WINNER: SANTIAGO PONZINBBIO VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION
Andrews: In Brazil, you have to do a lot more to win by decision there if you are a foreigner. Santiago dictated the fight for the most part and while Strickland had him in trouble several times in the bout, he was unable to take advantage and simply tried to counterpunch him. That won’t work in Brazil. A good win for Santiago.
LURI “MARAJO” ALCANTARA VS FRANKIE SAENZ
Luri Alcantra of Brazil and Frankie Saenz of the USA face off during the UFC Fight Night Weigh-ins at Gigantinho Arena on February 21, 2015 in Porto Alegre, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes
WINNER: FRANKIE SAENZ BY UNANIMOUS DECISION (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Andrews: Frankie Saenz not only hung with the favourite Alacantra, but used his wrestling along with aggressive takedowns. Unlike Strickland in the first fight, Saenz took the action to Alacantra instead of waiting for an opening and forced the judges to make a decision. Good win for Saenz.
#14 RUSTAM “TIGER” KHABILOV VS ADRIANO MARTINS
WINNER: ADRIANO MARTINS VIA SPLIT-DECISION (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Andrews: The short reaction in this fight was that Martins out-wrestled Khabilov, which was a bit of a surprise. But not much else happened. Not a very eventful contest after the first round.
CEZAR “MUTANTE” FERREIRA VS SAM “SMILE’N” ALVEY
WINNER: SAM ALVEY VIA FIRST ROUND KO 3:34
Andrews: Two smilin’ hooks was all it took for Alvey to retire the TUF winner Ferreira. Up until that point, Cezar was winning the fight. A quick and excellent win for Sam. I don’t think anybody saw this coming.
#6 EDSON “JUNIOR” BARBOZA VS #12 MICHAEL “THE MENACE” JOHNSON
WINNER: MICHAEL JOHNSON VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Andrews: Johnson used a smart gameplan, pressuring him and not allowing him to set up his dangerous kicks. Barboza was reduced to backpeddling. He landed a few kicks, but Johnson showed determination and a smart gameplan, well executed, can overcome blazing talent.
#8 ANTONIO “BIGFOOT” SILVA VS #13 FRANK MIR
WINNER: FRANK MIR VIA FIRST ROUND TKO 1:40
Andrews: What a left hook by Frank Mir, but even more impressive was the setup. He switched stance in the beginning of the fight, which as Kenny Florian said, probably threw Silva off. Mir needed an impressive win tonight. He got one. What a night for the underdogs!