While former UFC Heavyweight Champion Junior Dos Santos admits that current UFC Heavyweight Champion Fabricio Werdum has improved a lot over the years, he is still giving the edge to the challenger, Stipe Miocic, in the next UFC Heavyweight title fight.
Dos Santos spoke with Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of “The MMA Hour” at MMAFighting.com and explained why he feels Miocic has the advantage over Werdum heading into their scheduled showdown at UFC 198 in Werdum’s home country of Brazil.
“Werdum has evolved a lot, he impressed in the few times he fought. He has evolved a lot. His ground game is the best in the heavyweight division, no question about it. He has what it takes to keep the belt for a good time, but he’s facing a tough opponent next. Miocic has that knockout punch. I was completely dizzy a few moments when we fought. He has that punch, and his stand-up is more complete and better than Werdum’s.
“I don’t see how… Werdum is excellent on the ground, but I don’t see him taking anyone down. If the fight stays standing, I see Miocic as the favorite. If it goes to the ground, it’s going to be fast. But I see Miocic as the favorite standing. Comparing their qualities, I don’t see Werdum taking him down, so it’s going to be a stand-up fight and Miocic has an advantage.”
While he still has to get past Ben Rothwell at UFC Fight Night 86 on April 10th, JDS admits that he feels good knowing that he holds wins over the two fighters who will be competing in the next UFC Heavyweight title bout.
“I think it’s great that I already beat the two guys in the next title fight. I think it’s great that the division is stacked. When you have someone holding the belt for so long… It’s positive in a way, yes, but the division is in a good moment.
“I don’t care that much about rankings, and that doesn’t matter that much in the UFC too,” he continued. “What really matters is which fight sells more at the moment. I want to move forward and get to my goals. My main goal is to become world champion again, and I know I’m capable of doing that, but I need to earn a title shot first, and I might need two or three fights. But I’m capable of doing that.”