Taking on the legendary Minotauro Nogueira in a rematch of their 2008 interim title bout, Mir did not dominate the fight as easily as he did their first time around.
In the clinch, Nogueira rocked Mir hard midway through the first round, buckling the former champion who's head visibly snapped back on a multitude of occasions. Dropping to his knees, Mir instinctually went for the take down and some how was able to find himself in position for the kimura as the two scuffled.
Remarkably, Mir was able to secure the kimura as Nogueira tried to spin out. It was so locked in, however, that Mir actually broke his arm, ending the bout in the first round.
This win earned Mir Submission of the Night honors as well as making him the first person to stop Nogueira, a high ranking Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, by submission. He is also the first person to finish Nogueira twice.
Now riding a three-fight win streak, Mir is rolling through some pretty tough opponents in the heavyweight division. Facing fellow teammate Roy Nelson in May, Mir easily dispatched his overweight foe to take the decision.
That win came right after a rather droll fight against Mirko Cro Cop that ended with an out of nowhere knee in the third round, putting the Croatian away.
With three straight high profile wins, Mir is right back into title contention. This win may not have earned him a title shot just yet, but it's not hard to envision him being one or two fights away.
What Mir needs is a dominating performance against a top three heavyweight. Although it is not ideal to match a guy on a win streak against a fighter coming off a loss, the only logical opponents Mir should take would be either Cain Velasquez or the loser of Brock Lesnar vs. Allistair Overeem.
Taking on a high level former champion would be a great matchup for Mir as an impressive win would surely earn him a shot.
Facing Lesnar for the third time might be the best fight for Mir as a win would give him a second win in their trilogy and would be a huge draw for the UFC.
Velasquez or Overeem would be tough fights, especially after seeing some holes in Mir's striking. However, that would make a win over either guy that much more impressive.
At the end of the day, Mir is realistically one big win away from a title shot and maybe two wins away if he faces lesser competition.
Be sure to stay tuned to Bleacher Report for all things UFC 140. B/R is your home for complete coverage of the December 10 fight card, from pre-fight predictions to in-fight coverage, results and post-fight analysis.
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