Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Aleksandar Rakic Promised Fallen Friend He’ll Beat Thiago Santos

Aleksandar Rakic could not be more motivated ahead of his fight against Thiago Santos on March 6.

#4-ranked light heavyweight Aleksandar Rakic has had an impressive run in his first three years in the UFC, tallying a record of 5-1 in the promotion. In his most recent fight, Rakic was able to defeat Anthony Smith via unanimous decision in August, which is what catapulted Rakic to inside of the top 5 of the division and now has him in line for arguably the toughest fight for him thus far in his UFC run: former title challenger Thiago Santos. And Rakic could not possibly be more motivated to get a victory.

“I’m gonna be prepared for war, and I know Thiago is also gonna be prepared for war,” Rakic told MMA Junkie. “I want this title shot, and I want this belt so bad. I made a promise for one friend of mine who I lost a couple of days ago, and I promised his family that I’m gonna win against Thiago and I’m gonna get the title shot, and this motivates me a lot.”’

Rakic Expects The Same Thiago Santos

With Aleksandar Rakic coming off of a victory in his last fight and Santos having lost his last two bouts, first to former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and then to Glover Teixeira, some may think that the 27-year-old Rakic has the momentum on his side and is closer to being in his prime. But Rakic is not convinced that he will be fighting a lesser version of Santos than the man who earned a knockout total that is tied for second in UFC history.

“These two losses in a row mean nothing,” Rakic said. “Thiago is a dangerous guy. He fought Jon Jones very well, he fought injured. Now he lost to Glover. He knocked Glover down, Glover came back – he’s dangerous, he’s very dangerous – but you can see that the ring rust was there.

Thiago Santos says lessons learned from losses brought him to UFC 239
Thiago Santos on his way to another knockout. Credit: Per Haljestam, USA Today Sports

“I think in his next fight against me, Thiago is gonna come even more motivated because he’s hungry, he sees his chances, and I’m sure he’s training hard because I know Thiago. We were training in American Top Team in Florida two years ago. He’s a dangerous guy, but I’m now getting into my prime and, I’m telling you, Aleksandar Rakic in his prime, nobody is gonna beat me. Nobody. I can swear to God nobody’s gonna beat me.”

Who do you predict will win between Aleksandar Rakic and Thiago Santos on March 6?

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