Today, the UFC officially announced that two title fights will headline their UFC 111 card in Newark, New Jersey. Undefeated heavyweight Shane Carwin will take on former champion Frank Mir in an interim title match, while welterweight king Georges St-Pierre will defend his strap against Dan Hardy in the night’s final contest.
“UFC 111 will see our first two title fights of 2010, and they’re both incredible matchups,” said UFC president Dana White. “Georges St-Pierre is pound for pound one of the very best fighters in the world and has been dominant as welterweight champion, but Dan Hardy has the punching power and the confidence to score an upset on March 27th.”
GSP was last seen steamrolling the ever-dangerous Thiago Alves at UFC 100 this past July. The W marked his sixth consecutive victory, bumping his overall record to a dominant 19-2.
Speaking of impressive winning streaks, Hardy has won seven straight in earning his top contender status. The gritty Brit pulled off an impressive victory over Mike Swick at UFC 105 in his last outing.
Carwin was slated to challenge champion Brock Lesnar for his belt at UFC 108, however the chapm has been sidelined with an intestinal issue for the past couple months. Carwin holds a perfect 11-0 record, all ending in violent finishes.
Mir has served both as UFC heavyweight champion and interim champ for the world’s biggest MMA organization. He has won four of his last five fights, with his sole loss coming at the hands of the aforementioned Lesnar. Fans last saw him putting Cheick Kongo to sleep at UFC 107.
“I can’t say enough about a fight that has undefeated powerhouse wrestler Shane Carwin taking on former UFC Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir for the interim belt,” White added. “This fight pits Carwin’s one punch KO power versus Mir’s fight-ending submission game. Both of these matches are ‘can’t miss’ fights in terms of action.”
The company should know more about Lesnar’s future within the coming days, however by manufacturing an interim belt, it appears Lesnar may be out for a lot longer, if not forever.
“We’ll know this week,” White stated at the UFC 108 pre-fight press conference. “I think Brock’s going to the doctor this week, and we’ll know how this thing is going to go – whether it’s over.
“It could be career-ending for him.”
UFC 111 will be jumping off inside the Prudential Center on March 27th. Tickets are priced at $600, $400, $300, $200, $100 and $50 and go on sale Saturday, January 9 at 10AMET at all Ticketmaster locations.
UFC Fight Club members will have the opportunity to purchase tickets on Thursday, January 7th at 10 AM ET via UFC.com. A special Internet ticket pre-sale will be available to UFC newsletter subscribers the following day at 10 AM ET.