Former UFC legend and submission specialist Frank Mir is reportedly on the verge of signing a contract to enter the Bare-Knuckle Boxing ring for BKFC. Originally, reports started to surface that the deal was already done and Mir was going to make an appearance for the promotion, as per MMAFighting. However, Mir’s manager Malki Kawa of First Round Management publicly reached out to correct the record and confirm that, at the time of writing, no contract had been signed by his client:
He def hasnt signed yet but good work all of you for jumping the gun 💯 https://t.co/D2qruVmW55
— malki kawa (@malkikawa) September 19, 2020
Interestingly however, Kawa’s use of the word “yet” indicates that the despite “jumping the gun” as he put it, the MMA media outlets reporting the news weren’t entirely wrong either. At the age of 41, Mir is certainly in the twilight of his combat sports career and had already made the move that a lot of elite and aging fighters do, moving from the UFC to Bellator back in 2017. Bare-Knuckle Boxing seems to be attracting bigger and bigger names to it’s ranks but it is a bit of a surprise to see Frank Mir, a man known for being one of the best grapplers in the Heavyweight division, make the jump too.
Mir stormed into the sport and worked his way through the UFC ranks until he was crowned the Heavyweight World Champion in 2004, after less than 3 years as a professional fighter. It was then that tragedy struck as a motorcycle accident forced Mir to take a lengthy hiatus from the sport and be stripped of his title. Upon his return, he had a shaky start going 1-2 in his first year before rallying to win three straight fights and an Interim World Championship, one that would be taken from him by Brock Lesnar at UFC 100 in a rematch of a fight he won via Kneebar.
He consistently fought the very best that the UFC had to offer and would go on to challenge for another Interim title and another undisputed World Championship over the next few years. When he eventually made the move to Bellator, he also took part in their Grand Prix to crown a Heavyweight Champion, losing in the first round to fellow MMA legend Fedor Emelianenko. He won his last fight on his Bellator contract against Roy Nelson back at Bellator 231 and has been a free agent since.