Frank Mir is on his way to Strikeforce for a fight with Daniel Cormier.
The fight has been confirmed by UFC president Dana White and separately by both fighters after first being reported by USA Today. It will be the last fight of Cormier’s current Strikeforce contract.
“I got exactly what I asked for. No matter who they put in front of me, I was going to prepare myself like a professional and get ready to fight. But I just did not know, with everything that has been said about guys crossing over [from Strikeforce to UFC], if they were going to be able to find someone who fit how my career has played out,” Cormier told ESPN.com
"My career has played out where I've advanced at every step, from one guy to the next to the next. I wasn't sure if there were too many guys outside of UFC who fit that. Frank Mir does that and even more. He's a guy I have a great amount of respect for, all of his accomplishments and what he's done lately. I get to fight the guy who just fought for the UFC championship two months ago.”
Mir hasn’t commented on the fight so we don’t know how happy he is to be fighting under the Strikeforce banner, even if it is - apparently - just for this one fight. A loss to Cormier in what is seen as a second-tier promotion would not do his career or his standing in the rankings any favours.
Cormier is 10-0 and a former Olympic wrestling team member for the USA. Mir is a jiu jitsu ace and has held the UFC heavyweight title and the heavyweight interim title. He challenged Junior Dos Santos for the belt in May but lost a second-round TKO.
Earlier this month it emerged that an arrangement exists between the Showtime network, which airs Strikeforce, and Zuffa, which owns the UFC and Strikeforce, to the effect that no more key Strikeforce players will be moving over to the UFC - even if their Strikeforce contracts expire.
And so while there is considerable desire to see Cormier in the UFC - and strong desire on his part as well - we may not see it for some time. Or maybe, if Cormier wins, the UFC will offer Showtime the chance to trade him for Mir or another big name who is presently surplus to requirements.