“The Super Samoan” Mark Hunt (10-8-1) soared into the top 5 of UFC Heavyweights after he throttled Roy Nelson (20-10) and served him his 2nd career knockout loss in the 2nd round of their UFC Fight Night 52 tilt. Now, Hunt has some options.
Sitting pretty at 5-1-1 in his past 7, Hunt is in the proverbial driver’s seat of his career and a future title shot is looming if his soccer punching success continues. However, before he gets there he wants, a long awaited rematch awaits in his new hometown of Sydney. At Pride: Critical Countdown Absolute in 2006, Hunt lost to fellow UFC top ten heavyweight Josh Barnett (33-7) via first round kimura. That loss led to Mark’s worst run of his career, skidding in five consecutive losses.
Now he’s on the opposite end of the spectrum and wants that loss avenged. On Ariel Helwani’s MMA hour, Hunt pleaded his case:
“I was thinking, Josh Barnett, he’s one above me at number five, maybe Dana can put me and him on that show, on Sydney,” Hunt said. “I love rematches,” Hunt said. “I’ve never lost a rematch, Josh Barnett, me and you my friend, we’ve got a date. He’s No. 5 in the world, I want to fight guys in the top 10. I’d like to fight and get close to that title shot, That’s all I’m interested in my whole purposes is to fight for the world title. He’s one above me, so why don’t you put him and me together.”
Hunt says that Barnett is one above him in ranking, but the UFC actually has the pair flip-flopped with Mark at #5 and Josh at #6. Even still, Hunt is thirsty to get yet another win over a ranked heavyweight for a shot at gold.
“Of course I think I’m on the cusp of getting a title shot, I just need a top five guy,” Hunt said. “I had the shot last time against JDS and he knocked me out. I’m got back there again, I just need one more fight, a top-five guy, I really feel I’m close to a title shot. Maybe a top five guy, or a JDS rematch, or a Barnett, Someone top five and then if I can win, I can get a title shot.”