June 22, 2011
Matt Mitrione is back and he's feeling pretty confident.
The former NFL player and Purdue defensive lineman has been learning on the fly. One thing he realized immediately was that the stamina needed for MMA is a lot different than football. After a rough time on Season 10 of "The Ultimate Fighter," the big guy seems to have figured things out. For others in the heavyweight division, it hasn't been as easy.
Shane Carwin is way ahead of Mitrione in the heavyweight pecking order, but he may not be able to advance any further if he can't go all out for 15 minutes.
Mitrione joined ESPNRadio1100 in Las Vegas to talk about the heavyweight rankings. On Carwin, he thought the big man was holding back in the first round to conserve energy.
"Gassing is a huge thing to a heavyweight. For it to happen the first time in a major fight (Carwin vs. Brock Lesnar), I think it might have played a little bit of mind games for Carwin," Mitrione said (1:40 mark). "I think it's very serious. Gassing is a big damn deal."
Mitrione said the signs of pre-mature fatigue were there again two week's ago at UFC 131 against Junior dos Santos.
"I heard he said between the first [and second], 'my legs are dead'. I think that's another sign of the adrenaline dump. Adrenaline dump is a bitch and once it sets in it really plays mind games with you," Mitrione (4-0, 4-0 UFC) said. "He has a couple more fights to gets used to it. It can really make or break you."
The show also went on to speak about where Brock Lesnar ranks and what he'll be facing if he returns some time in early 2011.
Mitrione faces 6-foot-7, 265-pound Christian Morecraft this weekend in Pittsburgh at UFC on Versus 4.
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