A stacked UFC 167 fight card has taken a hit, losing a heavyweight contest between former UFC champion Frank Mir and former Strikeforce champion Alistair Overeem.
The reason given for the delay of the heavyweight bout was Mir's recovery from a UFC 164 knockout loss to Josh Barnett. Although it appears Mir was capable of making a quick turnaround, UFC officials offered the following:
While there was no indication whatsoever that Mir wouldn't be fully, medically cleared in time to compete on November 16th, UFC officials and Nevada Commission representatives believed that a short postponement would allow both athletes more time to train for the bout.
Although UFC 167 will miss Mir and Overeem, the UFC's 20th anniversary event is still impressive from top to bottom. Headlined by a welterweight title fight between Georges St-Pierre and Johny Hendricks, UFC 167 will also showcase a light heavyweight bout between big draws Chael Sonnen and Rashad Evans.
Both in their thirties and riding losing streaks, Mir and Overeem find themselves in desperate situations. UFC president Dana White called their meeting a do-or-die matchup, insinuating the loser's UFC career could be in jeopardy.
In moving to February, Mir and Overeem join a light heavyweight championship bout between Jon Jones and Glover Teixeira on the UFC 169 fight card. Newsday.com also learned that the 205-pound title fight has become official for Feb. 1.
Marking the UFC's annual event on the eve of Super Bowl Sunday, UFC 169 is expected to be held at the Prudential Center in New Jersey.