What’s happenin’ TNP Nation? Do you remember the pre-Independence Day fireworks ceremony I warned you about back in March? Well, if you check your calendars, you will see that the time has arrived. On July 3rd at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Ultimate Fight Championship will present a firework display impactful enough to rattle the foundation of the Washington Monument.

Allow me to channel the energy of octagon announcer Bruce Buffer…ahem…”FFFFIGHTING OUT OF THE BLUE CORNER, THIS MAN HAS A UFC RECORD OF 12 WINS, ZERO LOSSES AND ZERO DRAWS, FROM GREELEY COLORADO, THE UFCCCC INTERIIIM HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION OF THE WOOORLD…SHAAAANE CAAAARWIIIIN. FFFFIGHTING OUT OF THE RED CORNER, THIS FORMER NCAA WRESTLING CHAMPION HAS A UFC RECORD OF FOUR WINS, ONE LOSS AND NO DRAWS, HE IS THE CURRENT AND REIGNING UFCCCC HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION OF THE WOOORLD, BROOOOCK LEEEESNAAAAR.

At UFC 116, you will witness the biggest Heavyweight Division matchup in the company’s history for two reasons. First there’s the buildup!

In twelve victories, Carwin has won all fights by way of knockout or stoppage. If that doesn’t impress you, how about this? Carwin has never fought beyond the first round. His longest fight went 3:48 when he beat Frank Mir to become the interim Heavyweight Champion at UFC 111. Five of his fights ended in under 60 seconds (0:22, 0:31, 0:29, 0:49, 0:44, in that order). With only one-round fights on his resume, it’s safe to call Carwin the “Immovable Object”.

Then there’s Lesnar! Going from World Wrestling Entertainment to UFC Heavyweight Champion in just five fights under that brand gives Lesnar a strong case as the most successful converted fighter from another sport. While he doesn’t make quick work of his opponents the way his co-champion does, he does fight with an intensity that has yet to be rivaled. Accomplishing so much in so little time warrants him the label “Irresistible Force”.

And just so you know, the combined weight of these fighters is 530 pounds. Can the octagon maintain its structure when these behemoths collide?

When the cage is locked and the referee tells the fighters to get it on, many questions will come to mind. Given the power behind Carwin’s punches, how will Lesnar’s chin respond to a true test? Can Carwin’s endurance withstand a battle beyond the first round? Should Lesnar have taken a tune-up fight to prepare for Carwin on the heels of his recovery from diverticulitis? I can answer that for you. In a sport where the parity is glaring and anybody can rise to stardom, there really is no such thing as a tune-up fight.

Although I’m a fan of both fighters, now comes the part where I have to be a man about things and pick a winner. So far, Carwin has laid down everyone he put hit mitts on. With that said, I have to go with the more diverse fighter in Brock Lesnar. As if having a mean ground-and-pound game coupled with a wrestling attack isn’t enough, he’s now perfecting the art of Jiu-Jitsu. Unless Carwin can show that his arsenal has expanded, I’m looking for Lesnar to unify the titles and become the undisputed Heavyweight champion.

I don’t know what your plans are come 10pm July 3rd, but if you’re not in Las Vegas, my suggestions is for your face to be in the place that’s airing the fight. Everyone please have a safe Fourth of July holiday weekend and be on the lookout for my UFC 116 recap.

By Antoine Hoffman

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