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Thursday, 04/18/2013, 09:47 am

Cormier doesn’t believe that Mir is a ‘step up’

Antonio Silva, Josh Barnett, Frank Mir.

Through Daniel Cormier’s eyes, those three heavyweights are pretty even-Steven.

Cormier (11-0) makes his UFC debut against Mir (16-6) on Saturday in the UFC on Fox 7 co-main event in San Jose, California. Mir, a two-time UFC heavyweight champion, is being billed as Cormier’s toughest bout to date. Cormier ran through the Strikeforce heavyweight division – where he defeated the likes of Silva and Barnett in succession – and doesn’t believe the submission specialist from Las Vegas is that big of leap up the food chain.

In a recent interview, the former Olympic Wrestling captain makes a valid point:

 

“You know, I don’t feel like it’s that much of a step up, honestly. I don’t know if that’s just my respect for Josh Barnett and Bigfoot Silva, but those guys are really good. I don’t think many guys are a step up from those two. Bigfoot just beat Alistair Overeem, and Josh has long been considered one of the best in the world, and still is, in my opinion. I think anytime you start thinking about taking a step up from Josh or Bigfoot, you can only look to Cain for that position, or maybe Junior dos Santos. Really, those two are the only ones that are better than the rest of the guys in the division.”

 

Silva will fight Cain Velasquez at UFC 160 for the heavyweight title, an opportunity he earned after KO’ing Alistair Overeem.

Barnett (32-6) still has nowhere to hang his hat. Despite undoubtedly being one of the top heavyweights in the world he has remained unsigned since finishing out his Strikeforce run with a first round submission of Nandor Guelmino in January.

Cormier defeated Silva in 2011 and then earned a unanimous decision over Barnett soon after to grab the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix title. Barnett had won eight straight up until that point.

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