Junior Dos Santos

Overview

***Current UFC Heavyweight Champion***

Junior Dos Santos is considered by many to have the best technical punching skills and power in the heavyweight division; something he put on display in his stunning 1st Round knockout of then-UFC Champion Cain Velasquez to claim the heavyweight Title Belt.

Dos Santos was a late bloomer in the MMA world, considering he began his fighting career at the age of 20, but within a year he was already making his fighting debut. While some may question his ground game, Dos Santos has managed to avoid takedowns, and has become as proficient at takedown defense as UFC Hall of Famer Chuck Liddell in his heyday. As a raw talent (having taken to the sport late) Dos Santos still has a major upside in many people’s eyes.

A member of Team Team Nogueira / Champion Team, Dos Santos has one of the best stables of talent to train with, including UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva and former UFC and Pride Heavyweight Champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.

  • Date of Birth – September 12, 1984 (Age 27) in Salvador Bahia, Brazil
  • Weight Division – Heavyweight: 6’ 4” tall; fights at 239 lbs
  • Nickname – “Cigano”

 

Interesting Facts

 

Dos Santos received the nickname “Cigano” (a character from an old Brazilian Soap Opera) by showing up to MMA practice with his hair tied in a ponytail. Cigano means Gypise in Portuguese.

 

As a kid Dos Santos says he didn’t like fighting, and was the unwilling participant in three street-fights –posting a 1-2 mark in those affairs.

Strengths

A technically skilled puncher (a rare thing in the Heavyweight Division) dos Santos has knockout power with either hand, and as mentioned in the opening, dos Santos has one of the best takedown defenses in the MMA world.

Both offensively and defensively, Dos Santos presents matchup problems for any opponent.

Weaknesses

Dos Santos ground skills are still somewhat a mystery, and despite his background in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and MMA training many consider his ground game subpar at the moment (although he does have two submission wins on his resume, one by punches). At this time his ground skills can only be called untested in our opinion.

Fight History

  • Overall record: 14 wins – 1 loss
  • How he wins: 10 (T)KO’s; 2 Submissions; 2 Decisions
  • Losses: 1 by Submission

Result

Record

Opponent

Method

Event

Date

Round

Time

Win

14–1

Cain Velasquez KO (punches) UFC on Fox 1 02011-11-12 November 12, 2011

1

1:04

Win

13–1

Shane Carwin Decision (unanimous) UFC 131 02011-06-11 June 11, 2011

3

5:00

Win

12–1

Roy Nelson Decision (unanimous) UFC 117 02010-08-07 August 7, 2010

3

5:00

Win

11–1

Gabriel Gonzaga KO (punches) UFC Live: Vera vs. Jones 02010-03-21 March 21, 2010

1

3:53

Win

10–1

Gilbert Yvel TKO (punches) UFC 108 02010-01-02 January 2, 2010

1

2:07

Win

9–1

Mirko Filipović Submission (punch) UFC 103 02009-09-19 September 19, 2009

3

2:00

Win

8–1

Stefan Struve TKO (punches) UFC 95 02009-02-21 February 21, 2009

1

0:54

Win

7–1

Fabricio Werdum KO (punches) UFC 90 02008-10-25 October 25, 2008

1

1:21

Win

6–1

Geronimo dos Santos TKO (doctor stoppage) Demo Fight 3 02008-05-24 May 24, 2008

1

0:44

Loss

5–1

Joaquim Ferreira Submission (armbar) MTL: Final 02007-11-10 November 10, 2007

1

1:13

Win

5–0

Jair Goncalves TKO (punches) Mo Team League 2 02007-09-29 September 29, 2007

1

2:52

Win

4–0

Joaquim Ferreira TKO (retirement) XFC: Brazil 02007-04-29 April 29, 2007

1

5:00

Win

3–0

Edson Silva TKO (doctor stoppage) XFC: Brazil 02007-04-29 April 29, 2007

1

8:46

Win

2–0

Eduardo Maiorino Submission (guillotine choke) Minotauro Fights 5 02006-12-09 December 9, 2006

1

0:50

Win

1–0

Jailson Silva Santos KO (soccer kick) Demo Fight 1 02006-07-16 July 16, 2006

1

 

Key Wins and Losses

  • 1st Round TKO Win over Fabricio Werdum in his UFC debut in 2008
  • 1st Round KO Win over Cain Velasquez on UFC on FOX telecast to win UFC Heavyweight Title

Experts Opinions and Insights

Steve R.: “Regardless of who Dos Santos faces, or what the current circumstances of the fight are, his opponent has to constantly be aware of the knockout, which is enough to take anyone out of their comfort zone.”

Steve J.: “Always puts on a good show, always a slugfest!”

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