Junior dos Santos holds a win over current UFC Heavyweight Champion Stipe Miocic, and he said this week he believes the new Champ is going to hold onto that belt for a while pending his return to contention.
“Miocic is a great athlete, he gave me one of the toughest fights of my career, he hits really hard and I think he will hold that belt for a long time, until he meets me again,” dos Santos said in an interview with Portal do Vale Tudo (translated by Lucas Rezende at BloodyElbow.com). “He lives a great moment and I don’t think he’ll make the same mistakes I made against Overeem, like respecting him too much and giving him too much space.”
Miocic took the belt from Fabricio Werdum, a man dos Santos knocked out in his UFC debut. Though JDS is potentially open to the Werdum rematch, it’s no longer near the top of his list as it had been in the past.
“My will is to fight for the belt,” dos Santos said. “[Werdum] had the belt so I wanted to fight him, but now he doesn’t have what I want anymore, so he doesn’t matter to me. If the UFC decides I should fight him, I will. I confess I will even like it, it has the potential to be a great fight.”
Penick’s Analysis: Dos Santos, if he can compete at the level he was back at against Ben Rothwell, will be back into contention soon enough, and if Miocic happens to hold onto that title until he gets there it will be an easy enough fight to sell. Of course, in this heavyweight division, no one seems to hold onto the title very long, and if Miocic proves to be just another face at the top dos Santos may have a longer run to get back there.
[Junior dos Santos art by Grant Gould (c) MMATorch.com]
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