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What’s Next for Mark Hunt?

What’s Next for Mark Hunt?

UFC heavyweight Mark Hunt’s four-fight run in the Octagon has been one of the great stories of the past few years considering his age, overall record, and that the initial opportunity came as the result of his desire to honor an old contract instead of taking a buyout to walk away. However, his tale didn’t necessarily have a happy ending, as Hunt was stopped with strikes last weekend in a co-headlining clash with Junior dos Santos at UFC 160.

At 39, and as an undersized heavyweight who specializes in a single area, it’s unlikely Hunt will be around for more than another year or so before either retiring or ending up on the chopping block. As such, it’s important to capitalize on Hunt’s popularity and heavy hands by booking him in a particular manner. He doesn’t need to be handed top contenders by any means but rather competitors who are both interesting match-ups stylistically and produce the potential for a fan-friendly effort come fight-time.

Here are three solid options for the “Super Samoan” who should all be available by the time Hunt returns from his broken toe…

Todd Duffee

Duffee’s physique is pretty much the polar opposite of Hunt’s but his approach to action isn’t nearly as different. He loves to throw bombs and has the power to render any foe into a puddle of goo. All of his wins have come by way of knockout, so pitting Duffee against Hunt would almost certainly get the public going even if it would have zero impact on the contendership picture.

Frank Mir

Mir certainly has the takedowns/submissions to give Hunt trouble but he’s also got a questionable jaw. Though Mir is great on the ground, he also doesn’t mind striking or working in the clinch, so there’s always a chance he could get cocky and then cold-cocked. Regardless, the bout would make for a meeting where the individual able to impose his will would likely score a stoppage, plus the name-value involved would be at home on any PPV card.

Pat Barry

This pairing is almost too perfect to not put together at some point in the future. Like Hunt, “HD” is a relatively small heavyweight with iron hands and a kickboxing background. Though Barry is currently booked against Shawn Jordan at UFC 161, the card takes place on June 15 meaning his availability in six months shouldn’t be an issue.

4 COMMENTS
  • trupert says:

    Why not go with the ‘easy matchmaking’ and pair him up with Bigfoot Silva? Both have that one-shot power knockout ability. Should be fun.
    From those three mentioned in the article, I see Todd Duffee welcoming one of the new Euro-HW signees or Nandor or Geronimo, Mir fighting Barnett and Barry/Jordan winner fighting someone like Schaub/Mitrione winner or Herman/DelRosario winner.

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  • AlphaOmega says:

    I’d like Hunt vs Barry, that’d be an interesting slug fest I think

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  • MCM says:

    Good call all around trupert. ‘Cept if Hunt really is on his way out in a year or so, why pair him up with fighters that will be / should be in the top 10 for several more years. I like the fight with Mir as neither is really relevant to the title picture but both are still good names with long histories in the sport. I also like Hunt vs Big Nog (presuming he loses to Werdum) or even Hunt/Barnett.
    Or if by some chance Big Country loses his next one, I’d kill to see him and Hunt go at it Frye/Takayama style rather than see Mark take on Barry.

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  • MCM says:

    Looks like it’s Mir vs Barnett at UFC 164

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