Armchair matchmaker: Solving the heavyweight dilemma


Unless you’ve been living under a rock recently you would know that Alistair Overeem, the top contender for the UFC heavyweight championship has pissed hot.

The former Strikeforce champ has had most of the mixed martial arts contingent skeptical about his herculean frame that he grew into over a period of a few years in the land of the rising sun and now it’s official.

Overeem’s drug sample returned a testosterone to epitestosterone ratio of more than 14:1, far above the Nevada state athletic commission’s 6:1 cut off point.

To put it into perspective, your average human being produces a 1:1 ratio, but we are dealing with high-level athletes here so Nevada allows up to 6:1 but Alistair was at 14:1, over double the limit and to my knowledge he does not have a Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) notice given for him.

If a fighter is producing a low-level of testosterone and its effective their performance in the gym or the cage a doctor can allow them to use TRT but when they are tested then cannot be above 6:1 as top middleweight contenders Chael Sonnen and Nate Marquardt have done in the past.

TRT can have great benefits in giving us a fair playing field, for instance using TRT has given Dan Henderson the ability to compete at 41-years-of-age and having some of the best showings in his entire career but it gives fighters an ability to go well over and get a leg up on the competition.

But enough of the technical mumbo-jumbo, let’s take a step in fixing this dilemma, Overeem was slated to face fellow hard-hitting giant Junior dos Santos for the top crown at 265-pounds to cap off an all-heavyweight main card at UFC 146.

As much as nobody wants to admit it, the right person to step up is former UFC champion Frank Mir – Since his unsuccessful bid to win the interim UFC title in 2010 he has not tasted defeat, most recently breaking the arm of submission magician Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in one of the most chilling moments in the promotions history.

The only issue there is Mir is already booked to walk to the cage on that May 26 card to face former champ Cain Velasquez in his first fight since losing the title but that vacancy wouldn’t stay open for long with almost anyone in the division lining up to take that chance.

Mark Hunt is on his Cinderella-story run through the division right now, the New Zealand-born kick boxer was one step away from getting a pink slip at the beginning of last year and now he’s had three-straight underdog victories that puts him just a few fights away from title contention.

Velasquez vs. Hunt is a fitting fight, either Velasquez gets back on track to getting his title shot or the aging former K-1 champion continues his inspirational story.

But once again mixing and matching has its fall-backs leaving Stefan Struve without a dance partner in seven weeks, Mike Russow could be a suitable opponent, there are clear complications because he also serves for the Chicago Police Department but if he could get some time free it would be a great test for both guys.

Russow has only tasted defeat once to Russian kickboxer Sergei Kharitonov in 2007 and is unbeaten in his last eleven fights with four coming inside the octagon – At 35-years-of-age he has years to serve in the police department but very little time to make a run at a title.

There’s how I would solve the crisis at heavyweight right now, but of course you know better and I’m completely wrong, tell me so below.

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