Junior Dos Santos

Dos Santos vs. Nelson at UFC 117

When an injury forced UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez to the sidelines for the better part of 2011, many wondered what would be befall his top challenger Junior Dos Santos, who was waiting in the wings for his title shot at the newly crowned belt holder.

Dos Santos stated right after the injury announcement was made that he would not be waiting around for six to eight months for Velasquez to return because that would put him out of action for a year as well, having last fought in August 2010.

The solution? Dos Santos will coach opposite Brock Lesnar on the 13th installment of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality show, which began filming early this week.

“Dana called on New Year’s Day. A few days earlier it was announced that Cain was injured. He said it was up to Junior, does he want to sit and wait for Cain or does he want to fight. Junior said no, he wants to stay busy,” Dos Santos’ manager Ed Soares said when talking about how his fighter got on TUF 13.

“Our first choice, and he rightfully deserves it, was to fight for the title, but considering that couldn’t happen, I think this is the next best thing that could have happened for his career. And in the long run, it might be a better path. To get the exposure that they’re going to get on ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ and then to fight a guy like Brock Lesnar, who is such a huge draw, I think it’s a pretty good solution to the problem.”

There’s no denying that Lesnar may very well be the biggest draw in all of mixed martial arts and while Dos Santos has rocketed up the rankings with his high powered wins, he still hasn’t reached the biggest part of the demographic yet. “The Ultimate Fighter” might help to change that.

The other biggest part of the challenge ahead for Dos Santos is staying busy. Fighters coming off of long layoffs have traditionally had mixed results. Whether for injuries or just sitting and waiting, most fighters agree that sitting on the sidelines for months at a time affects them come fight night.

Dos Santos also benefits financially from staying busy and going on the reality show, which is another reason the Brazilian opted to fight instead of sitting and waiting.

“I think it’s important for fighters to stay busy and keep fighting, that’s how they make they’re money. Unfortunately, some of these fighters, they still make most of their money from the fight purse; it’s not with sponsorship. You’ve got to fight to stay alive, he’s got to pay his bills. His last fight was in August and who knows when Cain would have been able to be back and fight,” Soares explained.

“I think (Dos Santos) needs to stay sharp and he’s gotta not have any ring rust.”

The payoff of course will show in the ratings when the show debuts in March and then in June when Dos Santos meets Lesnar in the main event of the pay-per-view for that month, tentatively titled UFC 131.

If Dos Santos is successful in that fight then he will welcome Cain Velasquez back to the Octagon later in 2011 with the UFC heavyweight title on the line.


Damon Martin is the lead staff writer and radio host for MMAWeekly.com.
Follow Damon on Twitter or e-mail Damon a question or comment.


Follow MMAWeekly.com on Twitter and Facebook.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Despite coaching Raquel Pennington on 'TUF,' Miesha Tate sees a 'a little bit of mystery' at UFC 205

  • 24 days ago
  • 15 views

After coaching Pennington on the 18th season of “The Ultimate Fighter,” Miesha Tate thinks their bantamweight their UFC 205 fight might still hold some surprises: “You still don’t know what it’s like read news >>

MMAjunkie Radio (1 p.m. ET): Junior Dos Santos

  • 23 days ago
  • 1 views

MMAjunkie Radio kicks off at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) with guest Junior Dos Santos.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #2323 with ex-UFC champ Junior Dos Santos

  • 22 days ago
  • 5 views

Stream or download Wednesday’s edition of MMAjunkie Radio with former UFC heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos.Filed under: News, Radio, UFC read news >>

Laprise Injured, Li Bout Off

  • 16 days ago
  • 1 views

Former TUF Nations winner Chad Laprise won't be appearing in his home province on December 10, as an injury has forced "The Disciple" from his UFC 206 bout against Li Jingliang. read news >>

Ashley Yoder Carrying TUF Experience into Invicta FC Debut | MMAWeekly.com

  • 14 days ago
  • 9 views

Coming off her experience on The Ultimate Fighter 23, strawweight prospect Ashley Yoder feels like she was able to use her time on the show to her advantage. read news >>

Kyoji Horiguchi knows UFC champ Demetrious Johnson will beat 'TUF 24' winner

  • 11 days ago
  • 27 views

BELFAST – Former UFC flyweight title challenger Kyoji Horiguchi is preparing for a rematch with longtime champion Demetrious Johnson.Filed under: Featured Videos, News, UFC, Videos read news >>

Watch Brock Lesnar Get Ragdolled by Bill Goldberg at WWE Survivor Series | MMAWeekly.com

  • 10 days ago
  • 978 views

Brock Lesnar got owned at WWE Survivor Series. read news >>

Junior Dos Santos wants to rematch Alistair Overeem, but will happily fight Stipe Miocic

  • 10 days ago
  • 45 views

Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos hasn’t been too successful in getting his next fight.Filed under: Featured Videos, News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos read news >>

Tim Kennedy Calls Out Anderson Silva, Vitor Belfort, and... Brock Lesnar? | MMAWeekly.com

  • 10 days ago
  • 33 views

Tim Kennedy took to Twitter to find a new UFC 206 opponent, even calling out the recently Goldberg-impaled Brock Lesnar! read news >>

Injuries take Perez and Sterling out of December bouts

  • 7 days ago
  • 1 views

Bantamweight contender Aljamain Sterling and former TUF Latin America winner Alejandro Perez will have to wait a little longer for their return to the Octagon, as injuries have forced both to withdra read news >>