UFC 137: Cheick Kongo vs. Matt Mitrione Head-to-Toe Breakdown

Aaron KellerstrassCorrespondent IOctober 27, 2011

UFC 137: Cheick Kongo vs. Matt Mitrione Head-to-Toe Breakdown

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    Now that Georges St-Pierre is hurt, the Matt Mitrione vs. Cheick Kongo fight has moved up to a co-main event at UFC 137 and rightfully so, as this should be a great fight.

    The heavyweight division is set to be shaken up and the winner of this one may very well find himself just a few wins away from a title match.

    Heavyweight fights are difficult to predict as either fighter is just one good punch away from Loopy Street. This is especially true of two fighters who hit about as hard as Ivan Drago from the Rocky films.

    Without further ado, here is a (meat) head to toe breakdown of Mitrione vs. Kongo.

Physical

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    Matt “Meathead” Mitrione usually weighs in at close to 265 lbs. making him one of the bigger heavyweights in the division. He has definitely gotten a lot leaner and faster since joining the UFC.

    Cheick Kongo will be the lighter of the two fighters but let’s be honest, if fights were won by physical looks alone Kongo would not only be champion of the UFC, he would likely be ruling us all while roaming the countryside pillaging villages and enslaving the women. The dude is scary.

    Advantage:  Hard to say. Even though Kongo looks like the baddest man on the planet, Mitrione is actually stronger. People forget how quick you have to be to play in the NFL and Mitrione is as good an athlete as you will find at that weight. Kongo may look like an unstoppable video game cyborg that could chase down a cheetah, but Mitrione is a slightly better athlete, so the advantage goes to him.

Striking

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    Both of these fighters have one punch knockout power as they showed in their last fights, Kongo with his comeback demolition of Pat Barry and Mitrione with his “walk off” knockout of Christian Morecraft. Kongo has better kicks, but Mitrione hits as hard or harder than anyone in the heavyweight division.

    Advantage: Once again I give the advantage to Mitrione. When “Meathead” puts his hands on someone they generally go to sleep. He is bit like Mr. Sandman only he doesn’t sneak into your room at night like a creepy weirdo.  Mitrione was so sure he’d knocked out Morecraft that he turned his back and walked to his corner as Christian was still falling to the canvas. If Mitrione connects, we will see a large pile of Kongo on the floor of the cage.

Ground Game

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    Out of the twenty eight combined fights these two have had, exactly two of them have ended in submission, the last being by Kongo in 2003. In other words, these guys like to stand up until they put the other guy down.

    Advantage: It is safe to say this one is not going to the ground. If it does, look for Kongo to have a slight advantage, as Mitrione has spent less time on his back than a nun. However, this one is probably not going to the ground unless someone gets knocked down by a punch. 

    If this fights ends by submission it would be more shocking than if Kongo entered the ring wearing a wedding dress.

Chin

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    In his five fights Mitrione’s chin has not really been tested, but that is largely due to the fact that he was too busy pummeling his opponents to get hit.

    Kongo won KO of the night honors against Pat Barry but people forget how close he was to losing that fight. Kongo was knocked down and Barry was tenderizing him before Cheick made his big comeback. Kongo was so close to being finished that had the ref stopped the fight I don’t think anyone would have complained. Kongo did however go the distance with champion Cain Velasquez so we know he can take a punch.

    Advantage: Mitrione hits harder than Pat Barry, so if Kongo allows himself to be punched as many times as he did in his last fight he may not remember his name afterwards. This will definitely be the biggest test for Mitrione and we will probably find out just how good his chin really is.

    Until I see Mitrione hurt in the cage I am going to assume that meaty head of his is pretty solid, but as I said previously, either of these guys can take the other out with one punch, so it will come down to who lands that punch. Slight advantage goes to Mitrione.

Miscellaneous

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    France vs. America—We all know how this would turn out.

    Booba vs. Lynyrd Skynyrd—Let’s see, a French Rapper against American Southern rock. I don’t like either of these but the guy’s name is Booba. And he is a French Rapper. 'Nuff said. “Simple Man” by Skynyrd wins the battle of entrance songs by a longshot.

    Walkout T-shirt—What is the point of judging these as I have yet to see any UFC gear that wasn’t hideous. You can judge the shirts of Mitrione and Kongo for yourself, but needless to say they both look like something The Situation would wear on the Jersey shore.  I will give Mitrione points for at least keeping it simple. Kongo’s shirt looks like something Jackson Pollack painted in kindergarten.

Prediction

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    I think Mitrione is on his way to stardom in the UFC and Kongo is just another step in the process; but it won’t be easy. Kongo has shown a lot of skill and heart but all of that goes out the window once you get hit by one of Mitrione’s Mack truck punches.

    I think these guys will feel each other out for a round and then go all out in the second round where “Meathead” will get dialed in and land a big punch, and unlike Kongo’s fight with Pat Barry, there will not be a miraculous comeback.

    Sometimes fights are as simple as fist meets face and this one will end with Mitrione rudely introducing one of his to Kongo’s grill.