Fans and pundits love to speculate upon the future of UFC fighters. UFC president Dana White recently removed the guesswork concerning three fighters on the UFC roster.
Speaking to the media on Thursday, White was asked if the UFC 167 matchup between Overeem and Mir will be a "do or die" fight, White replied to the affirmative, "Yeah, definitely."
Overeem (36-13-0-1) locked up a UFC heavyweight title shot when he sent former champion Brock Lesnar into retirement with a brutal liver kick at UFC 141. That title fight, scheduled for UFC 146 never came to fruition thanks to a failed drug test and subsequent suspension.
Overeem returned to action at UFC 156, losing to Antonio Silva by third round knockout. He followed up that defeat with a first round knockout loss to Travis Browne at UFC Fight Night 26.
Former UFC heavyweight champion Mir has not had his hand raised in victory since breaking Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira's arm via kimura at UFC 140. Since that December 2011 win Mir has been TKO'd by Junior dos Santos and Josh Barnett, and dropped a unanimous decision to Daniel Cormier.
Former UFC lightweight and welterweight champion B.J. Penn faces a different dilemma heading into his next bout. If Penn (16-9-2) losses to Frankie Edgar when they face off after coaching season 19 of The Ultimate Fighter, he will be receiving the dreaded "Chuck Liddell talk" from White.
White was asked "Is it safe to say that this is his last shot if he can't beat Frankie this time around? Will it be a Chuck Liddell situation?" The UFC president answered both questions with a resigned "Yes."
The reference to Liddell points back to the fact that White essentially forced Liddell into retirement in 2010.
Penn's last victory came in November 2010 when he knocked out Matt Hughes in 21 seconds. That win came after losing two decisions to Edgar. Following those two losses Penn fought Jon Fitch to a draw. Penn lost his next two fights, dropping unanimous decisions to Nick Diaz and Rory MacDonald.
If you're keeping track, Mir, Overeem and Penn have a combined record of 1-9-1 heading into their next UFC fights.
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