It was a rematch worth waiting for.
Frank Mir was on the verge of being stopped in a first-round thriller before coming back to submit “Big Nog” with an arm-breaking kimura at just over three minutes into the opening round.
Nogueira came out in the opening stanza with plenty of head movement and scored first with pinpoint accurate strikes and combinations. The fight then went to the clinch, and it was Mir that scored the first takedown of the bout with a trip.
“Big Nog” made his way back to his feet and started to go to work in the clinch with knees up the middle, and effective dirty boxing in close quarters.
Nogueira then fired off a straight right hand that staggered Mir. A wobbly Mir went to his knees, where Nogueira fired off a flurry of punches before going for a guillotine choke.
Mir escaped the choke, transitioned to side mount, and went to work isolating the right arm of Nogueira. As “Big Nog” fought off the kimura attempt, he deftly rolled to reverse positions, but Mir countered, rolling over again and landing back in a dominant position.
With his arm extended at a gruesome angle as Mir continued to apply pressure with the kimura, the tap came from Nogueira, but not before the arm horrifically snapped.
“I’m really glad the fight ended the way it did. I hope that ‘Minotauro’ is OK,” Mir said. “I idolize him, and I’m curious to see what he has to say after. When you are as big as we are, things are going to happen.”
The submission victory marks the third consecutive win for Mir (16-5 MMA, 14-5 UFC), but more importantly puts him right back into title contention in the UFC’s heavyweight division.