COMMENTARY | Junior Dos Santos vs. Alistair Overeem: The fight is going to happen, UFC President Dana White confirmed on Thursday, March 7. Just not at UFC 160.
Overeem tweeted he had experienced a “slight tear” in his quadricep, leaving White to either scramble for another opponent or wait on the injury to heal, according to Yahoo! Sports.
White’s first idea was to offer the fight to Mark Hunt because of an impressive 9-7 record. (Yes, that’s sarcasm.)
Despite a pretty abysmal showing inside the cage during his 16-fight-career, Hunt has somehow managed to win four of his last five, all inside a UFC cage.
Apparently, that’s enough to qualify for a number one contender’s match, but on Thursday, White also confirmed Hunt had turned down the offer, MMA Junkie noted.
Hunt may be the only one thinking clearly.
Whether Dos Santos faces him or it’s Junior Dos Santos vs. Alistair Overeem, either fight is one that should not be made at this stage of the game. These booking ideas are also proof the heavyweight division could use the attention the women’s bantamweights are now getting.
White and the UFC are doing a tremendous job pushing female fighters, but what’s going on with the heavyweights leaves much to be desired, and it shouldn’t be that way especially when there are fighters out there who deserve the shot.
Exhibit A is former Strikeforce champion Daniel Cormier, who transitioned to UFC with the belt and an 11-0 record. He also went through Antonio Silva to get it.
Silva, many of you may remember, was beaten so badly by Velasquez in their last meeting that you would have needed a team of pool drainers to remove all the blood.
Yet all Silva had to do to earn a title shot and a rematch with Velasquez was beat Overeem, which he did. Velasquez will (probably) mop the floor with Silva again at UFC 160 in May, and you, fight fan, are expected to pay $50 for it.
If the division ran on merit rather than hype, Cormier would have the next title shot, and he wouldn’t have to go through anyone to get it.
But since White is determined to give Silva, a guy who probably shouldn’t even have a contract, the next crack at the top, he could have at least placed Cormier in a match with Fabricio Werdum.
Werdum has won his last two fights in impressive fashion. His last loss was to Overeem, but it was a snooze-fest in which Werdum, a grappler, dared Overeem to engage him.
Overeem wouldn’t. Instead he waited for Werdum to stand, so he could throw more punches with nary a clean shot landing. It was a terrible fight and a gift to Overeem.
Of course, the missteps here are nothing new. Just look at the early push UFC gave Brock Lesnar, who proved quickly he had no business competing with real fighters.
It was a painful lesson to learn culminating when Overeem finished him off in the first round, leaving the former champion with a 5-3 career record.
Think about how crazy that is. Lesnar was marketed as an unstoppable force. He was given his first title shot having won only two of his first three fights.
A title shot. Let that sink in.
His story should be a cautionary tale about the dangers of giving guys opportunities who haven’t done anything. It is also an embarrassing part of the division’s past.
And with moves like Dos Santos vs. Hunt or Dos Santos vs. Overeem for the next number one contender’s match, it appears White hasn’t learned how to deal with the big guys.
A lot could happen between now and when the two finally square off. But the fact it was even discussed with Dos Santos recently being dominated by Velasquez, is proof sound logic has left the building.
Do you think Junior Dos Santos and Alistair Overeem should be fighting for a shot at Velasquez, or should they move to the back of the line?
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