Former UFC Champs Tim Sylvia and Jens Pulver Featured on "War on the Mainland" Pay Per View

Tim-sylvia-with-jens-pulver_mediumWar on the Mainland will air on Pay Per View tomorrow, August 14 at 10pm EDT. It will feature three MMA title fights, including Tim Sylvia vs Paul Buentello for the heavyweight strap.

Josh Gross makes the case for watching:

You spend enough money on MMA pay-per-views, so no one could hold it against you if you decided against dropping $30 for a card full of aging fighters, some of whom are well past the point of no return. But if you're home Saturday night with nothing to do, perhaps the idea of watching veteran heavyweights Tim Sylvia and Paul Buentello might appeal to you.

It's somewhat surprising the two never met during their respective runs in the UFC, which saw Sylvia twice control the heavyweight belt. Stylistically, there doesn't seem like much of a chance it'll turn out to be a bad fight. Sylvia prefers to stand and use his long frame to frustrate opponents; Buentello usually just wings punches no matter who's in front of him.

Also on the card, Jason Lambert meets Allan Goes and Thales Leites fights late replacement Matt Horwich. Neither bout is terribly appealing, though Leites remains a quality middleweight working himself back into contention after losses to Anderson Silva and Alessio Sakara in 2009.

Jens Pulver has yet to retire, and the former UFC lightweight champion, loser of five in a row and seven of his last eight, meets prospect Diego Garijo. For some, this may be reason enough not to order the card, which is understandable. But as fighters are put out to pasture, new ones always emerge. One of the more interesting prospects in the sport, welterweight A.J. Mathews, fights the equally inexperienced Sean Choice.

The full card is here.

More in the full entry including comments from Sylvia and Pulver.

More BE coverage of War On The Mainland

Sylvia talked about his bout and the card at the press conference, via press release:

I'm feeling great. I'm stoked to fight Paul. We go way back. We were supposed to fight a couple of times. We've both had hiccups. I'm sorry for Pedro (Rizzo). At first, I was supposed to fight him, but there was a change. Maybe he can fight the winner. (Powerhouse CEO Brian Manna later announced that Rizzo would be fighting on the next Powerhouse card.) This is a great card, an awesome show. I go way back with Lambert and Jens. I'm the godfather of Jen's son. The only problem with fighting in the main event is I can't watch these other guys fight. I did buy the pay per view and I'm Tivo-ing it. I've gone through a lot of changes. I kind of had a 2-year layoff and I've been working more on my Jiu Jitsu. Don't be surprised to see my ground game in this fight."

Pulver talks to Dave Meltzer:

Sylvia was a teammate with Pulver in the glory days of the Pat Miletich camp in Davenport, Iowa, when it was the most feared camp in the world with champions such as Miletich, the UFC's first welterweight champion, and Matt Hughes, a two-time welterweight champion and Hall of Famer.

...

Pulver, who recently opened a gym named Driven near Boise, Idaho, noted it'll be great to see Sylvia again. Pulver believes a mental barrier, not a physical one, caused his losing streak, which led being cut by WEC even though he was one of the company's most popular fighters.

"It was a decision on [UFC president] Dana [White]'s part," Pulver said without a trace of bitterness. "We don't have anything for you. When you lose five fights in a row, they aren't going to have anything for you. Most people don't get to lose five fights in a row. It was a business decision. I was no longer a good business investment."

This card is pretty comparable to Shark Fights 13 on September 11 card featuring Keith Jardine, Sokoudjou, Houston Alexander and others. I'm skeptical that there is a viable PPV market for cards featuring nothing much more than fighters who are no longer with the UFC.

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