Though UFC heavyweight Junior dos Santos’ boxing is amongst the most respected in Mixed Martial Arts, there was a strong belief he would opt to utilize his BJJ ability against Mark Hunt in their match-up at UFC 160. After all, its common knowledge Hunt’s knockout power has put a number of opponents to sleep while his ground game leaves a lot to be desired. However, minus a few takedowns, “Cigano” was content to trade with the heavy-handed kickboxer and ultimately put him away with strikes in the final stages of their scrap.
Dos Santos explained his reasoning in a post-fight interview with Fuel TV, saying his self-belief was stronger than his sense of concern about Hunt’s reputation for rocking foes.
“He’s very dangerous in the stand-up, but I trusted my hands. I came there to knock him out. I believe I can knock out anyone,” Dos Santos stated, pointing to the spinning wheel kick he used to set up the stoppage as evidence. “I never felt very confident to do that before, but I trained for it in the gym. Today I felt way faster than him, so I tried it and was amazing. It wasn’t very well connected, so when he went down, I enjoyed it.”
The strike-based stoppage was the thirteenth of his career and improved his overall record to 16-2. As a result of his win over Hunt he is scheduled to square off with champion Cain Velasquez at some point later this year.
The full interview with Dos Santos can be seen below: