Stipe Miocic aims to bring unprecedented stability to the Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight title. However, he has one enormous problem standing in his way.
The Strong Style Fight Team cornerstone will defend his championship against the 6-foot-4, 262-pound Francis Ngannou in the UFC 220 main event on Saturday at the TD Garden in Boston. Miocic finds himself on a five-fight winning streak that has driven him to the top of his volatile division and put him on pound-for-pound lists across the sport. He last competed at UFC 211, where he dispatched Junior dos Santos with punches in the first round of their May 13 rematch. Miocic has compiled a stellar 11-2 record since joining the UFC roster as an undefeated prospect in October 2011.
As Miocic prepares to risk his title against the surging Ngannou, here are some of the numbers that have come to define him:
1: Knockout loss. Stefan Struve did the honors in the UFC on Fuel TV 5 headliner on Sept. 29, 2012, when he put away Miocic with second-round punches.
2: Consecutive successful title defenses as the UFC heavyweight champion. Miocic shares the all-time record with Randy Couture, Tim Sylvia, Brock Lesnar and Cain Velasquez.
4: Sub-minute finishes on his resume. Miocic stopped Corey Mullis in 17 seconds, Fabio Maldonado in 35 seconds, Philip De Fries in 43 seconds and Andrei Arlovski in 54 seconds.
5: Countries in which Miocic has competed as a professional mixed martial artist. They are the United States, Brazil, Australia, Canada and England.
9: Wins by first-round knockout. His list of victims includes Arlovski, Alistair Overeem and Fabricio Werdum.
14: Men other than Miocic who have held the undisputed Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight title. They are Arlovski, Werdum, dos Santos, Couture, Sylvia, Lesnar, Velasquez, Mark Coleman, Maurice Smith, Bas Rutten, Kevin Randleman, Josh Barnett, Ricco Rodriguez and Frank Mir.
35: Years of age. When Miocic was born in Euclid, Ohio, on Aug. 19, 1982, the top five movies at the domestic box office were “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” “Friday the 13th Part III,” “An Officer and a Gentleman,” “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” and “Star Wars (Re-issue).”
80: Inches of reach. Miocic will be at a three-inch disadvantage against the monstrous Ngannou.
626: Significant strikes landed in UFC competition, according to FightMetric. Miocic ranks fourth all-time among heavyweights in the category, behind dos Santos (899), Werdum (785) and Velasquez (718).
390,000: Dollars in post-fight bonus money earned. Miocic has been awarded “Knockout of the Night” once, “Fight of the Night” three times and “Performance of the Night” on four occasions.