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Bellator 231: Frank Mir understands his main event status in the latter part of his career

At 40 years old, Frank Mir has just about done it all. A former UFC Heavyweight Champion, Mir (18-13) has headlined cards against some of the best fighters in the world. Win or lose, he always managed to make an impact.

Recently, Mir has been on a bit of skid. 2-6 in his last eight fights with the UFC, Mir went to Bellator and immediately landed himself in the Bellator Heavyweight World Grand Prix. Losing to Fedor Emelianenko in the quarterfinals, Mir then lost to Javy Ayala. Both were via TKO. Now, Mir headlines another card while also getting a chance to go 2-0 against Roy Nelson.

Back in 2011 at UFC 130, Mir beat Nelson (23-17) via unanimous decision. Now, the two will fight again at Bellator 231. Surprisingly, Mir’s outlook on fighting is not what many would expect. Speaking to Double G Sports’ Dan Yanofsky at Bellator 231 Media Day, Mir emphasized what’s really important in the latter half of his career.

“I know this is a boring answer, but this is the truth: I’ve never cared about titles, I’ve never cared about records, I’ve never cared about accomplishments. Even winning and losing I try not to really care about. Obviously we do a little bit because of our ego. I just care about fighting,” Mir stated. “I got out there and I test myself. Like taking a real test; it is great if I pass it, but it is not the end of the world if I fail it because I can go back to the gym and work on things, improve and figure out why I failed. If I fail because of my own reasons, that’s the best situation, besides a victory. The only part I’m ever nervous about are situations that I can’t control. Like a referee not giving back my mouthpiece.

As far as how he handles this fight, he is taking it one step at a time. The neutral attitude may not sound sexy, but it is how Mir runs things.

“This Friday, when I step into the cage, whether it was for a title, Brock Lesnar was in front of me, you name it, I wouldn’t change how I approach it,” Mir went on to say. “It is about the journey.”

On the same weekend that Rory MacDonald and Douglas Lima face off for welterweight glory, Mir and Nelson will look to put on a great show for the fans. In a heavyweight division that is limited, Mir sees his presence as a true money-grabber for Bellator.

“They (Bellator) are in the business of making money,” Mir continued. “The fact that me and Roy are in the main event is because that logically makes them the most money. If that wasn’t the case I wouldn’t be here. That’s one thing I have going; heavyweights are a weak division and I’m a great fighter regardless of the record. The way I carry myself also helps. People tune in because they want to see me win or see me lose.”

Besides becoming an MMA star, Mir has dabbled in pro wrestling. Fighting under the GCW and Bloodsport brand, Mir sees money being made by both sides. Someone who has managed to handle both lives simultaneously is Jake Hager.

The All-American currently works for AEW, and is set to fight at Bellator 231. Mir is interested in Jake for a number of reasons and is even willing to fight him on either side of the combat sports world.

“Hager is a good name. If he starts getting to where there will be views, I’ll fight Jake,” Mir stated. “I’d also like to pick his brain on pro wrestling because he also came from a classical background, he’s a high-profile wrestler from Oklahoma. The guy is great on the ground. He made the transition into pro wrestling, maybe he can give me tips. Maybe, we could get in the ring together at some point and even in the cage.

Bellator 231 takes place inside the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT. Tickets are still available and you can also watch it on The Paramount Network.

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Baseball Editor, Misc. Sports Editor. Covers all things combat sports (MMA, Pro Wrestling and Boxing). When he's not writing, Daniel hosts a podcast, The Main Event.
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