In just ten days time Fabricio Werdum will battle Mark Hunt for the UFC’s interim heavyweight title, and if the latter takes home the gold, it will be one of the year’s top stories.
Sure, Hunt has been bombing out the opposition and only Junior dos Santos has defeated him since 2012, but Werdum is the betting lines favorite heading into their scrap. While Werdum has improved his striking game immensely, he possesses one of the sport’s best ground games, which many believe could be Hunt’s undoing. The punishing striker,however, says he has a pretty effective way of negating Werdum’s world class jiu-jitsu.
While speaking to “Submission Radio” recently, the 40 year-old Hunt was asked about Werdum’s ground skills, and here is what the K-1 vet relayed (quotes via Bloody Elbow):
“Well everyone’s a world class ground fighter until they get a punch to the face. So that’s how I deal with all these ground fighters like everyone else. I hit ‘em in the head and there goes your f—ing black belt.”
Okay, sure, it’s a line that’s been used many times before, but when Hunt says it, it seems to have a certain ‘yeah, no sh-t’ ring to it no? It’s also worth noting that Hunt has worked a ton on his ground game and takedown defense as well, but we are talking about a guy who tapped Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Fedor Emelianenko.
But what does Hunt think of Werdum’s striking game? Which the heavyweight has showcased in several recent performances, including his decision win over Travis Browne in April? Hunt was asked whether Werdum could pose some difficulties for him standing, and the New Zealand star relayed:
“Well I don’t know. I know his game will be to push the pace to try and get me tired, to try and shoot the take down so I’m on the ground, you know what I mean? It’s the same thing. If he tries to stand and bang, well then good for me. If he doesn’t, then he’s gotta work his game plan. So I feel I’ve got an advantage on all angles, so you know it’s nothing new to me.”
If you’ve followed Hunt throughout his kickboxing and MMA career, then you know that fight is on the must see list.
Hunt and Werdum will scrap at UFC 180, which will go down in Mexico City on November 15th. The card will be available via pay-per-view throughout North America.