Although it’s been a year since Shane Carwin last fought, he’s managed to keep himself relevant after being tagged as next in line to face champion Brock Lesnar.
The heavyweights were slated to meet twice, at UFC 106 and than again at UFC 108, but Lesnar’s health took a turn for the worse after his UFC 100 victory over Frank Mir, leaving Carwin all dressed up but with nowhere to go.
Now that Lesnar is officially back in the picture, the former No. 1 contender is looking to regain his place at the front of the UFC heavyweight line. In order to do so, he’s going to have to beat Mir this Saturday at UFC 111 inside the Prudential Center in New Jersey.
Carwin was last seen knocking out Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC 96 last March. He’s perfect through his first 11 professional fights, and has finished all of them in devastating fashion.
Most would imagine that a 12-month hiatus would be detrimental to a fighter’s rhythm, especially one with championship aspirations and only a handful of professional bouts under his belt, but Carwin feels that he’s actually benefited from the down time.
“I’ve been able to work a lot of different aspects of the game and you know work on my technique and become a more complete fighter,” Carwin explained. “When I step into that Octagon it will be a lot different.”
There’s no question that Carwin has a pair of bricks for fists, and all he needs to do is connect once and Mir’s night will be over, but it’s scary to think what he’s added to his arsenal while training under the tutelage of MMA guru Greg Jackson and his talented team at Jackson Submission Fighting.
The heavyweight landscape should be a little more clear when Saturday night is all said and done. It will be interesting to see where Carwin lands when the dust settles.
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