Over the past few months, UFC heavyweight champ Junior dos Santos remained fairly adamant in his opposition to giving Alistair Overeem a title-shot due to the Dutchman’s failure to pass a random drug test earlier this year. The two were originally set to scrap in May, but Overeem was popped for an elevated T:E Ratio linked to testosterone use and pulled from the fight, losing his ability to apply for a license in Nevada until late December.
However, the Brazilian champion’s stance has changed in recent weeks due to a number of public challenges from Overeem, and he’s even gone so far as to tell his employers he wants to face Overeem in his next bout to silence his adversary’s criticism rather than take on Cain Velasquez as originally planned.
“I sat down with Junior dos Santos yesterday, who is the nicest guy in the world…he said, ‘I have nothing but respect for Cain Velasquez. I like him as a person and as a fighter and I think he deserves a shot at the title but I do not want to fight him.’ Which is not what he said a month ago,” said UFC President Dana White to a group of media members after UFC on FOX 4 (caught on video by MMAFighting). “He said, ‘Alistair Overeem is a punk. He’s got a big mouth and he’s been saying lots of bad things about me and I want to knock him out. I want to knock him out now.”
Dos Santos later addressed the matter on Twitter, explaining his stance by writing, “”I will fight whoever UFC puts in front of me. But when people talk to much I feel anxious to shut them up.”
Overeem can apply for a license on December 27 though he is hoping to reduce his sentence by participating in a series of drug screenings over the coming months, hoping to re-establish faith with the Nevada Athletic Commission and the MMA world in general.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC