Last Saturday very well could have been the last time fans see mark Hunt step inside the UFC’s Octagon or even possibly still compete in MMA. The 42-year-old New Zealand-born “Super Samoan” residing in Australia is busy continuing a battle outside of martial arts.
Hunt signed a new six-fight deal with the UFC in April and has now completed two of those bouts including his fight UFC 209. At the time of the signing, Hunt openly talked about how the end of the new deal would also mean the end of his career but that he felt he still had a heavyweight title run in him. This was prior to his UFC 200 opponent, Brock Lesnar, failing multiple drug tests and Hunt’s ensuing legal action.
The bout with Lesnar (initially a loss for Hunt) was then ruled a “No Contest”, so he is 0-1-0 (1 NC) under his current terms. See the recap of his 209 fight against Alistair Overeem below.
Hunt attacks first with a leg kick to the left calf of “The Reem.” A second kick is checked as they both feel each other out for the time being. Overeem expects the third, checks it, and is the first to land a punch, countering with a right straight. Hunt looks for a big left hook, but it’s avoided with ease. Overeem scores with a front kick and Hunt is now bleeding from a shin after that same checked kick.
Another front kick sets up an overhand left from the Dutchman. They tie up for a few seconds but nothing results and the fight stays concentrated on the lower limbs for now. Inside of three minutes to go, there seems to be an accidental headbutt, but there is no pause. The next kick Hunt throws lands to the ribs and can be heard throughout the T-Mobile Arena.
Overeem just catches Hunt with a short right hand. Hunt fires back a right jab and Overeem stumbles as he got off balance while also throwing another kick. Hunt lunges and whiffs on a power right again. The clock drains as Overeem connects with a clinch knee and a fairly standard opening round appears to go his way. Hunt does force him to cover up in the last seconds thanks to a brief flurry and an elbow, but it’s too late to do much.
Overeem keeps on leading the dance but changes things up with a right spinning back kick to the midsection. Hunt’s head whips backward following a straight left but he reacts well with another kick to the ribs— with the injured leg. The next from kick Overeem goes for just misses the head. Hunt has been able to ruin any clinches from Overeem practically all fight long but takes a trio to the bread basket and is backed up against the cage.
The men separate with under 2:30 left. Hunt is defending the “phone booth fighting” attacks less and less now. He presses forward and rocks his man with another elbow to the head. Overeem’s backing up and punches are scoring as he’s now against the fence. Hunt successful with an overhand right but Overeem spins out and puts Hunt back on defense.
They trade elbows during the final minute of the round but Overeem continues to damage Hunt with knees for the remainder of it.
A beaten down Hunt rises from his stool. The fighters touch gloves and go back to work. Hunt goes wide on a left hook while Overeem side kicks his torso to then bring down a left hand from the sky. A right hook has Hunt looking for cover as they tie up again and push each other away. Hunt sends the kickboxer running with a left jab.
Overeem returns to the clinch though and that’s where the fight ends. Hunt can no longer withstand the punishing knees. One to the body, one to the head, and the journeyman faceplants the canvas.
Alistair Overeem def. Mark Hunt via KO at 1:44 of Round 3
Overeem later revealed that he had been battling food poisoning and had to be hospitalized twice prior to the fight which makes the victory all the more impressive.