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Kubrat Pulev Beats Frank Mir via 1st-Round TKO in Triad Combat Fight

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IINovember 28, 2021

Andrew Couldridge/Pool via AP

Professional boxer Kubrat Pulev defeated mixed martial artist Frank Mir by first-round TKO to cap Triller’s Triad Combat card from Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas on Saturday.

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Kubrat Pulev STOPS Frank Mir in the first round! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TriadCombat?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TriadCombat</a> <a href="https://t.co/t0BmaKYPSs">pic.twitter.com/t0BmaKYPSs</a>

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The belt is awarded to Kubrat Pulev <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TriadCombat?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TriadCombat</a> <a href="https://t.co/szybCwRzHP">pic.twitter.com/szybCwRzHP</a>

Pulev was a massive favorite entering this bout, and that came to fruition.

By the end of the fight, Pulev was throwing hard rights and lefts without any defense from Mir, who was somehow able to keep standing.

Eventually, the referee stepped in between the two fighters to stop the match right before the end of Round 1.

Triad Combat is basically a mesh between boxing and MMA, with Matthew Wells of MMA Junkie providing more information:

"This new take on boxing will take place in a triangular ring, with the fighters wearing 8-ounce hybrid gloves. Aside from the usual punching techniques, fighters will be able to utilize spinning backfists and superman punches."

Ariel Helwani of BT Sport relayed a Triller press release explaining the concept in more detail:

Ariel Helwani @arielhelwani

… in a specially designed triangular ring over two-minute rounds featuring professional boxers competing against professional mixed martial arts fighters.”<br><br>More: <a href="https://t.co/RMJgcyflcD">https://t.co/RMJgcyflcD</a>

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The idea, as the press release stated, is to "even the playing field" between boxers and MMA fighters.

"The specific motto of leveling the playing field between the two sports utilizing crossover gloves and withholding allowed is meant to offer boxing and MMA fighters an even battleground where neither opponent has a greater advantage," the release read.

Both Mir and Pulev came into this matchup with excellent resumes.

Mir, 42, has a 19-13 professional MMA record, with 14 wins by way of knockout or submission.

He won the UFC's interim heavyweight championship at UFC 92 in Dec. 2008 before falling to Brock Lesnar in a title bout in July 2009 following a second-round TKO.

Mir had two more title chances after that result, falling to Shane Carwin for the interim title in March 2010 before losing to Junior dos Santos in May 2012 for the heavyweight crown.

The Las Vegas native's last MMA fight was a unanimous-decision win over Roy Nelson at Bellator 231 in Oct. 2019.

This marked Mir's second professional boxing match. He fell by unanimous decision to Steve Cunningham in a six-round fight last April.

Meanwhile, Pulev entered Saturday 28-2 all-time in the professional boxing ring. He won the vacant IBF International heavyweight title with a unanimous-decision win over Travis Walker in Oct. 2011 and successfully defended the belt five times.

The Bulgarian's losses came against two of the best heavyweight fighters in the sport's history. Wladimir Klitschko took him down with a fifth-round knockout for the IBF and The Ring heavyweight titles in Nov. 2014, which marked the first loss of his 21-match career.

Pulev then rolled off eight straight wins, but Anthony Joshua then defeated him with a ninth-round knockout last December for the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles. That marked the 40-year-old's last time in the ring.

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