Mark Hunt vs. Pat Barry could be a standup war for the ages. | Photo: Daniel Herbertson
K-1 legend Mark Hunt was known as a one-trick pony in MMA -- a kind of sideshow/asterisk -- until UFC 135 in Denver. Showing an improved ground game along with his time-proven heavy hands and intimidating standup, Hunt took a much-needed win over Ben Rothwell. The time with American Top Team has paid off for the 37 year-old Hunt, as a revamped ability to keep it on the feet only magnifies his considerable skills there.
Pat Barry squares off against Stefan Struve at UFC Live 6 on Saturday in Washington, D.C., but, win or lose, a showdown between “HD” and Hunt is readily marketable. While the going is good, I think it’s time the UFC made the Hunt-Barry matchup.
Neither man is likely to be able to take down the other, and the combination of striking specialists with heavyweight power would provide a can’t-miss offering. It is also a good match for the career prospects of both men, who invariably are going to run into problems against better wrestlers. Plus, Hunt and Barry are exceptionally short for the weight class.
Jason Probst can be reached at Jason@jasonprobst.com or twitter.com/jasonprobst.