‘The Last Emperor’ Fedor Emelianenko may have beaten Frank Mir in just 48 seconds at Bellator 198 in Chicago a few weeks ago, but that’s not stopping Mir’s boxing coach Angelo Reyes from calling that instant classic MMA’s Hagler vs Hearns.
Borrowing the great Jim Ross’s tagline: Fedor vs Mir was nothing short of a ‘Slobberknocker’. Albeit just 48 seconds of punches, knees, throws, and a knockout. The third bout in the opening round of the Heavyweight GP sure lived up to the expectations. And despite student Frank Mir being on the wrong end of the knockout, Angelo Reyes found plenty to love in the fight.
Heading into the night, Mir was the favorite according to the experts in Vegas, however, the man who is widely considered the greatest heavyweight fighter of all time had other ideas.
Speaking candidly, Mir offered his thoughts on the loss. “I was pissed off I got thrown through the air,” Mir explained. “So instead of fighting like a martial artist, I fought like a street fighter.”
“Imagine Rampage Jackson vs Frank Mir for an alternate spot in the heavyweight Grand Prix.”
The former 2x UFC heavyweight champ would sum up his feeling on the defeat with one word, ego, that is, Mir let his get in the way. “I was a little embarrassed when I was thrown,” Mir revealed.
Moving forward Mir plans to go back to the basics, he feels his boxing is now a strength, and plans to spend more time with longtime BJJ coach Robert Drysdale. Seems like Mir has a plan, but where would that leave boxing coach Angelo Reyes?
The Vegas based striking coach told Cageside Press he still plans on working with Mir on the regular. “I’m sure I’ll be working with Frank going forward,” said Reyes. “Frank has always been a smart fighter and if he feels he needs to work more on his ground game that’s fine, but I still expect to work with him pretty regularly, the team is going to stay intact.”
Even though the fight only lasted 48 seconds, Reyes believes Fedor & Mir is an instant classic and something of the MMA equivalent to one of boxings greatest contests. “I’m just glad the fans got a Hagler/Hearns type of fight,” said Reyes.
“If you love MMA, regardless of the promotion, how could you possibly say anything negative about a 48 second heavyweight match where both guys knocked each other down, and you saw knees, you saw punches, you saw kicks, and you saw a judo flip. And I’m sorry it was only 48 seconds, but in a way that’s what makes it like Hagler/Hearns.”
Looking ahead, Mir has some commentary duties with ACB that he is obligated to, but the former UFC champ would like to get back to work as soon as possible. “Frank wants to get right back in it ASAP,” said Reyes.
“If Bellator is going back to Madison Square Garden later this year, I’d love it if they included Frank on that card. Imagine Rampage Jackson vs Frank Mir for an alternate spot in the heavyweight Grand Prix.”
Whether Mir draws Rampage later this year at MSG or he decides to fight in ACB and knock some more of the ring rust off, those 48 seconds in Chicago proved that this former champ still has something left in the tank.