Lost among the discussion of the highly entertaining UFC 98 results was the kick off to the Japanese based DREAM Super Hulk Grand Prix. It featured some of the Japanese promotion regulars at heavyweight—the impossibly large Hong Man Choi, the comically large Bob Sapp, and even featured new comer, the artificially enlarged Jose Canseco.
But in this group was the lean yet mean DREAM Middleweight Champion Gegard Mousasi. Mousasi had been rumored to be pondering a move to Light Heavyweight but apparently forwent that idea and jumped straight to Heavyweight.
Mousasi showed up the heaviest he has ever been in a pro fight, at 218 pounds but still was massively out-weighted by the 286 pound Mark Hunt. Mousasi is known for his Dutch Kickboxing and Judo skills, but some question his judgement by wishing to move up a weight class and face larger fighters because of his lean frame and build.
Mousasi answered all these questions in his match with Mark Hunt. Mousasi quickly took the fight to the ground, controlled the far larger man with ease, attempted several submissions before locking in an armbar 1:19 into the fight.
Mousasi made a huge statement with this win. His complete demolition of a man with 70 pounds on him, the questions about his ability to compete and dominate at the 205-pound level are well answered.
The matchup I cannot wait to see is Mousasi's rumored match with Vitor Belfort in an Affliction matchup. However, Belfort has expressed no interest in fighting Mousasi at anything but 185 poundss. Two outstanding group fighters with solid standup backgrounds always makes for exciting fights.
At whatever weight Mousasi appears in for his next fight, there is little question about his future in at 205 pounds and higher being a bright one