After a brutal loss to Glover Teixeira last Nov., Thiago Santos has spoken out about the mental hurdles that plagued him before the fight.
After his failed title bid with the champion, Jon Jones, the Brazilian striker suffered serious injuries to his knees. Following a strenuous healing process, with the help of his partner Yana Kunitskaya, the two managed to get the light heavyweight fighter back in the cage. However, they would soon realize that may have been too early for Thiago Santos. Unfortunately, thoughts of nervousness and anxiety crept in before the Teixeira fight, as he assumed his knees were not one-hundred percent.
“My last camp had too much anxiety mixed with doubt, fear of having another knee problem,” Santos said in an interview with MMA Fighting. “I was still recovering, doing physical therapy, so it was different. I was only focused on training now, feeling my knee 100 percent.”
As the Brazilian indicated, after the damage was done to his knees, waves of nervousness and anxiety came over the professional athlete. Even after the fight concluded, Thiago Santos was adamant about what had gone wrong.
“If you watch it, I only threw one kick the entire fight,” Santos said. “I didn’t kick too much. I usually kick a lot. I did more boxing. I think it was a [mental] block, a year and a half away, so that was the main difference. Now I know everything is normal again, everything is fine, so I can do everything inside the octagon.”
Santos will look to pick up a huge win this Saturday at UFC 259. Granted, he understands the mistakes of his last fight and admits that things are normal with his legs this time around. The winner between Aleksander Rakic and Thiago Santos will no doubt be one step closer in their journey to the title.