At UFC 165: Jones vs. Gustafsson, Heavyweights do battle as Brendan Schaub (9-3 MMA; 5-3 UFC) faces Matt Mitrione (6-2 MMA; 6-2 UFC). This is the 3rd fight on the 5 fight PPV main card. Neither man is currently ranked in the top 10 at Heavyweight in the official UFC rankings. UFC 165: Jones vs. Gustafsson airs live on PPV this Saturday, September 21 with the main card starting at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.
Former housemates collide in this battle of TUF veterans. Both Schaub and Mitrione came to the UFC through the Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights season. And both sport losses to season champion Roy Nelson - Schaub in the finals, Mitrione more recently. Both have been touted as future major players at times, but both are also 1-2 in their last 3. The end result? A fight between two middle of the pack Heavyweights desperate to get back on track and to not fall any lower.
How do these two stack up?
Schaub: 30 years old | 6'4" | 78" reach
Mitrione: 35 years old | 6'3" | 82" reach
What have these two done recently?
Schaub: W - Lavar Johnson (UD) | L - Ben Rothwell (KO) | L - Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (KO)
Mitrione: W - Phil De Fries (KO) | L - Roy Nelson (KO) | L - Cheick Kongo (UD)
How did these two get here?
After losing the TUF Finals, Brendan Schaub won 4 straight, culminating in big back to back wins over Gabriel Gonzaga and Mirko Cro Cop. He hit a brick wall in Big Nog, and his follow up KO loss to Rothwell has become the stuff of GIF-making legend. More recently Schaub had am embarrassingly bad performance at grappling event Metamoris 2. This Greg Jackson trainee seems to have completely lost all momentum and needs a win here badly.
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Mitrione's career path is remarkably similar to Schaub's. His 5-0 start in the UFC (which was also his debut in professional MMA) included a win over Kimbo Slice, but came to a halt against first Cheick Kongo and then Nelson. He's come back with a win, but like Schaub, his name has been more in the news lately for negative reasons, as his prejudiced comments towards Fallon Fox drew a lot of bad publicity. I'm sure he would like to get that behind him and remind people that he was once an undefeated fighter being talked about as a possible future contender.
Why should you care?
Both badly need a win, which can lead to fun fights, though it can also lead to dull, tentative performances. Also, when Schaub gets KO'd, it's generally a GIF moment, so there's that to watch for.
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