Brock Lesnar is fast as lightening. Randy Couture is 45 years old.
Randy is smart. Brock is dumb.
Those are the factors that will decide this fight at UFC 91.
Let’s assume that Lesnar has trained-up enough to avoid getting caught in a ridiculous foot-lock like the one that Frank Mir defeated him with. (When was the last time a UFC fighter was defeated by a foot lock anyway? Ever?) And since Couture is no submission specialist, he will have to find another way to defeat Lesnar. But Randy is very smart, and if it is possible, he is the fighter most capable of designing an anti-Lesnar game plan.
Part of the solution might come from Couture’s Greco-Roman wrestling experience. Lesnar has defeated many freestyle wrestlers, and fake wrestlers, so maybe Randy can surprise him with some slick Greco-Roman moves.
Couture’s biggest problem may be that he does not have enough film of Lesnar to find flaws in Lesnar’s game. Lesnar only has a few rounds of MMA experience.
Both Lesnar and Couture are decorated wrestlers. We know that Randy’s boxing is pretty good, but we haven’t seen enough of Lesnar’s stand-up to make a judgment of his skills. However, that’s exactly what I want to see from Lesnar. The last thing we need is to have Tito Ortiz’s boring ground-and-pound replaced by Lesnar’s boring ground-and-pound.
Frank Mir said that he saw stars after Lesnar knocked him down with a right hand. Heath Herring literally flew across the ring after another Lesnar right hand. We need to see more of that. Lots more. Watching the strike in slow motion, you see that Herring was like a deer frozen in the headlights. Lesnar was that much faster. And don’t forget that Lesnar landed two very nice leg kicks on Herring too.
It would be sad if Lesnar would continue to think of himself as primarily a wrestler because he has the speed and agility to do some awesome stand-up. And he should take note of the fact that even fighters who are competent on the ground, like Chuck Liddell and Rich Franklin, try to keep fights standing up to please the fans. Ideally, Lesnar would throw some strikes, do a lightening fast take-down, get into an exciting scramble on the ground, let the guy up, knock him head-over-heals, lather, rinse, repeat.
Heath Herring has never been a UFC champion, but he did defeat an equally gigantic wrestler, Mark Kerr, back in 2001. So, I think the fact that Lesnar was able to totally rag-doll Herring is a significant achievement.
I say that Lesnar is dumb because he can’t figure out how to play nice with others. He got cut from the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings because he was basically too much of a jerk. Lesnar is no team player, and make no mistake, MMA is a team sport. You may fight in the ring by yourself, but if you don’t train with a solid team, your success will be greatly diminished.
Lesnar is a lot like another very talented wrestling jerk, Matt Hamill. When Hamil was on The Ultimate Fighter TV show, the other fighters ganged up on him and gave him a beating – that’s how much of a jerk he is. Like Hamill, Lesnar trains by setting up a gym and then hiring people to come in and work with him. That’s not the best way to train. You want to join a camp with wise, graybeard coaches and other champion fighters. That’s how fighters like Anderson Silva and Thiago Alves do it.
Lesnar: “I like to do things on my own” – in his private gym. Lesnar: as a kid, “I didn’t make any friends. Life is not about making friends.” This is a very wrong attitude.
Randy is the exact opposite of Lesnar in this regard. He owns a chain of MMA gyms and has always trained with other top fighters. Lesnar may be talented enough to get away with being a lone-eagle jerk, but he will never reach his full potential with that type of training.
I also think that Lesnar might be dumb because he hit both Mir and Herring with rabbit punches. Is he too dumb to learn simple rules, or is he just too negligent to learn the rules? In either case, it’s a bad sign because there are quite a lot of details to master in MMA. It is my impression that fighters who make mistakes like this don’t go on to become champions.
As an MMA fan, I was overjoyed when a real fighter, Frank Mir, defeated the phony-baloney “professional” wrestler, Lesnar. That fool Hulk Hogan is always going on about how UFC fights are fake and that the fighters “work light.” What an imbecile. Of course, Hogan wisely watches UFC fights from the audience with his daughter Brooke, instead of getting into the ring.
Unlike Hogan, Lesnar is a real accomplished athlete. The problem though, is that he has spent too many years pretending to fight when he could have been developing real MMA skills. If Lesnar were facing a young Randy Couture, he wouldn’t have much of a chance.
But I will not root for Couture. If Couture wins, he might run off and pout about his pay and hire layers to sue the UFC again. He always does that, and always robs the fans of exciting rematches.
So, I will be rooting for Lesnar unless he bores me with incessant ground-and-pound. And I think he can win.