Junior dos Santos on UFC 146 Victory: Second-Round KO Was My Strategy to Beat Frank Mir



Junior dos Santos defended his UFC heavyweight championship for the first time on Saturday night, knocking out former titlist Frank Mir in the main event of UFC 146.

Prior to his triumph at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, however, “Cigano” successfully foretold how the fight would end at Friday’s weigh-ins. His title belt now resting securely around his waist, Dos Santos says that the prophetic prediction was not made out of simple gamesmanship. According to the champ, he truly believed that he would hit the jackpot in round two.

“[The second-round knockout] was my strategy for the fight,” dos Santos at Saturday’s post-fight press conference. “I thought he came to take me down, and in the first round, I was trying to keep my distance and make him tired. In the second round, it was my plan to walk a little more forward than in the first, and it worked. I think when you believe so much in yourself, that things happen. That’s why I’m so positive.”

Mir attempted to close the distance early in round one, latching onto a single-leg before trying to pull the champion down into a foot lock. The American’s efforts proved fruitless, as the champion escaped and then began to work his jab, staggering Mir with a right hook to close out the frame.

Things only got worse for Mir in the second stanza. Dos Santos started to loosen up even further, rifling shots to Mir’s body and head while avoiding most of Mir’s blows and keeping out of takedown range. The finish came 3:04 into round two, when the Brazilian snapped back Mir’s head with a hard right straight and landed a hammering fist on the ground for good measure. Though he was dominant from start to finish, dos Santos was complimentary of his opponent’s resilience after the bout.

“This was a good fight for me,” said dos Santos. “[Mir] can really take a punch. I’m feeling some pain on my hand now. It was a good fight, but every fight that I have, I have more experience. I came into this fight more confident to use my speed and my boxing skills to win.”

Upon earning the knockout, dos Santos was cheered enthusiastically by a large contingent of Brazilian supporters, some of which dos Santos says came to the event just to see him fight.

“It was fantastic for me to see all of the Brazilian flags. All the Brazilian people in the crowd made me so proud and so energized,” said dos Santos. “Every time I looked up, I could hear them and see the flags. It was such a great, positive vibe, and I’m so glad to be here representing everybody from Brazil. I thank them for their support.”

Now with a successful title defense to his credit, dos Santos is expected to next put his belt on the line against the man he knocked out to capture the gold, Cain Velasquez. While dos Santos declined to offer a prediction on how that return fight might play out, he says he would approach the bout as the most important of his career.

“I don’t care who is my next opponent. If I have to fight with Velasquez again, I’m ready. Let’s do it,” said dos Santos. “Velasquez is really tough. In my mind, he is different in this division, because he is very fast and his stamina is really good. For sure, he is dangerous and a good fighter.”

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

Related News

  • 3 days ago
  • 31 views

It’s hard to believe a fighter like Junior dos Santos, a former UFC champion with a record of 16-3, may be a man with no place to go, but that’s the situation before him now. Granted, the UFC will no read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 225 views

Uh, guys? Guys? Aren't we all forgetting something here? It's pretty important, actually. Not, like, water and food important, but at least as important as remembering to turn off the stove after usi read news >>

  • 13 days ago
  • 142 views

Two years after signing a contract with the UFC, Geronimo dos Santos is no longer on the UFC roster. "Mondragon" signed with the promotion in 2012 to compete at the UFC 153 card in Rio de Janeiro aga read news >>

  • 9 days ago
  • 14 views

Can Fabricio Werdum shock the world once again and dethrone Cain Velasquez at UFC 180? Junior dos Santos thinks so. A former UFC heavyweight champion and the only man to knock both Werdum and Velasqu read news >>

  • 28 days ago
  • 35 views

Frank Mir was known in the early days of his UFC career for his stunning submissions against many of the old guard. Case in point, check out this submission victory over Tank Abbott at UFC 41. read news >>

  • 8 days ago
  • 3 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to FOX Sports 1 this weekend (Sat., Aug. 23, 2014) with UFC Fight Night 49: "Henderson vs. dos Anjos" from inside BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Get compl read news >>

  • 3 days ago
  • 5 views

In keeping up with the trend set earlier today in Macau, the UFC handed out four performance bonuses in Tulsa. The UFC's first event in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 20 years featured a variety of entertaining read news >>

  • 25 days ago
  • 872 views

Here we go... When Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight titleholder Cain Velasquez defeated Brock Lesnar to win the 265-pound strap at the UFC 121 pay-per-view (PPV) way back in 2010, the read news >>

  • a day ago
  • 1 views

Following his shock KO over Ben Henderson, Rafael dos Anjos can now call himself one of the top 3 contenders at lightweight. It was a good weekend to be Brazilian, as Rafael dos Anjos, Thales Leites, read news >>