Former heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos has been keeping quiet since an October 2013 TKO loss to champion Cain Velasquez in their trilogy fight at UFC 166. The loss was dos Santos’ second in the Octagon and put him at 1-2 with his rival, Velasquez.
His return to action is highly anticipated given his (16-3) merit in the division, and while no opponent has been set, he expects a return in mid-2014, according to his head coach, Luiz Dorea, who spoke to MMAFighting.com.
“We’re thinking about a fight around May or June, but there’s nothing set yet.”
After his last fight with Velasquez, which looked eerily similar to their second fight, dos Santos was pegged as the proverbial number one contender as a win over Velasquez was just simply out of reach at this point. His manager went on to say that ‘Cigano’ will be seeking new training for his return, including a trip to America to incorporate wrestling to compliment his deadly striking.
“We have plans to spend some time in the U.S., seek new training,” he said. “We need to continue to evolve. When an athlete thinks he knows everything, it’s the beginning of the end. We need to learn new techniques, so we plan to go to the U.S. to train wrestling and also train in other gyms in Brazil.”
After two unsuccessful title bids, dos Santos’ camp is just worried about getting back in to the Octagon and racking up wins.
“We shouldn’t think about the title now, we need to work hard and win fights,” Dorea said. “To get there, we need to beat other fighters first. It may take a year, maybe more or maybe less, but the title is the consequence of our wins.”
His return date may set up a perfect timeline for a bout against Alistair Overeem if he can get past Frank Mir at UFC 169. He may also be given the fallout of an April bout between Fabricio Werdum and Travis Browne.
For full coverage of dos Santos’ return, visit SciFighting.com