In addition to the long-awaited rematch between Machida and Shogun and the sure-to-be-sick fight between Josh Koscheck and Paul Daley, UFC 113 also brings us a heavyweight clash between Kimbo Slice and Matt Mitrione.
Both Kimbo Slice and Matt Mitrione are relatively inexperienced as they only have a total of 6 professional fights between them. Of course, their fights as cast-mates on the Ultimate Fighter series aren’t listed under their “professional” records. Of their combined 6 fights, each of these guys has only fought once in the UFC – and that was during the TUF season finale.
In their UFC debut fights, Kimbo defeated Houston Alexander and Matt Mitrione knocked out Marcus “Big Baby” Jones. Both Kimbo and Matt have similar fighting styles. They prefer to keep it standing and both of them possess some serious knockout power.
With both of these guys being so big and powerful, a clean shot from either has the potential to knock the other out. However, based on what I see, I believe that Kimbo is the much more technical striker. His boxing and raw toughness has been his claim to fame and as we all witnessed in his backyard brawling videos, he can take a hard shot.
Granted, Matt Mitrione likely hits much harder than any of the guys that Kimbo Slice was put against in his street fighting days (even with the gloves). However, even though he hits hard, I don’t think that Matt Mitrione is making the same sort of effort that Kimbo is to become a well rounded “mixed martial artist”.
His roots are in boxing and rather than focusing on his wrestling or his Jiu Jitsu – which will likely give him an edge against a brawler like Kimbo Slice – he’s been working almost exclusively with his kickboxing trainer.
On the other hand, Kimbo Slice has been training alongside the world class fighters at ATT (American Top Team). We got to see his improved grappling ability during his last fight against Houston Alexander as he controlled him during the scrambles and at one point, he even suplexed him onto the Octagon canvas.
Matt Mitrione is hits hard, but Kimbo Slice is the more technical striker. Either of these guys has the power to knock the other out but Kimbo has been working with a larger stable of well-versed fighters so I believe that will give him the edge in this fight.
That being said, you can’t write Matt Mitrione off. Anything can happen in a fight (especially when heavy-handed heavyweights are involved) and to prove that point, just re-watch Kimbo’s fight against Seth Petruzelli. Either way, I predict that this one will be ending with a knockout.