While Alistair Overeem claims he couldn’t accept two offered matchups with Junior dos Santos due to injury, UFC President Dana White begs to differ.
White put Overeem (37-13 MMA, 2-2 UFC) on blast during Wednesday’s edition of FOX Sports 1’s “UFC Tonight,” saying the former Strikeforce heavyweight champion was “literally hiding” from a fight with dos Santos (16-3 MMA, 10-2 UFC).
“The Reem” was quick to discredit that notion, citing the need to rehabilitate nagging injuries before he can return to the octagon following his decision victory over Frank Mir at UFC 169 earlier this month.
While the two parties haven’t spoken since the issue was brought to public knowledge, White said at a Thursday media luncheon in Las Vegas that he isn’t buying what Overeem’s selling.
“I have a feeling this rib injury is going to last as long as it takes for dos Santos to get another opponent,” White told MMAjunkie. “That’s what I’m willing to bet. This is going to be the longest rib injury ever. As soon as we get dos Santos a fight that rib is going to heal right up.”
If not for an injury, White isn’t sure exactly why Overeem would be unwilling to take him a fight that would likely be a direct path into a championship bout against Cain Velasquez.
“You say you want to be the best in the world? You want to be the world champion? This is the No. 1 guy. This is the guy. This is the f—ing gatekeeper,” White said. “You beat this guy, nobody is going to question you. Shouldn’t he be chomping at the bit for a fight like that? Especially when you told us how much money you deserve and how you’re going to be the next champ.”
With Overeem currently vacationing in Jamaica, there is no way to find out who is on the right side of the argument.
From White’s perspective, though, all he has to do is look back at Overeem’s in-cage callout of Brock Lesnar to know if a fight the Dutchman really wants was offered, he’d surely accept.
“[Overeem] marches his f—ing ass in here. Tells us how much he’s worth. He’s worth all this money, he’s the best heavyweight in the world, he’s going to be the champion, and he doesn’t want to f—ing fight anybody,” White said. “I bet you his f—ing rib wouldn’t be hurting if we got Brock Lesnar, bet you his rib would be fine…did anybody hear anything about a rib injury until I offered him dos Santos two different ways?
“You guys come to whatever conclusion you want to on that, I know what the truth is.”
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(Pictured: Alistair Overeem)