Junior dos Santos hasn't seen the inside of the Octagon since his grueling five round battle against Stipe Miocic last December. Knee surgery has sidelined the former heavyweight champion until July, but that hasn't stopped him from thinking about his future.
Especially when it comes to a familiar name: Alistair Overeem.
Fresh off a unanimous decision win over Roy Nelson and a first round KO of Stefan Struve before that, The Reem has finally put together a win streak in the UFC. His first ever since his promotional debut in 2011. Now that he is finally making some noise, pundits have already began to pair him with Dos Santos. A matchup that was booked as a title bout for UFC 146 before Overeem's got suspended for a year due to an elevated testosterone:epitestosterone ratio
Dos Santos, for one, thinks the idea is quite interesting.
"That's an interesting fight. If the UFC also thinks so, it will happen" Said Dos Santos to Combate. "He's doing well, got himself two wins in a row. Before that he was sort of apathetic in the division. No matter who it is, I just want a fight that can make me evolve and get better at my quest to be the champion again. My goal is to just fight again. But that could be a good fight, yes".
When Overeem was asked about fighting Dos Santos again, he seemed hesitant, which stirred up rumors of him being afraid of taking the fight. "Cigano", however, prefers to think otherwise.
"I don't believe he's ducking me. He's a great fighter who conquered many titles. We, fighters, don't look at our opponents with fear or anything, that doesn't make sense to me and I think it's the same for most of the real ones. He's training with Greg Jackson, has added new weapons to his game, like the stomp we see Jon Jones do a lot. His footwork was good, he struck without getting hit back. He evolved. He's also not as buff as he was before, he has been working on his speed".
A member of Nova Uniao since 2014, Dos Santos revealed he plans to try new camps in 2015 in order to improve his game. Although he doesn't want to move away from Brazil, American Top Team seems to be on the top of his list.
"I have many friends over there. Antônio Carlos ‘Cara de Sapato', who is like a brother to me is training there now. There's Bigfoot, Roan Carneiro and Yuri Carlton who is my jiu-jitsu master. There's also Steve Mocco, who is a wrestling beast. I'd like to diversify. Big Nog and I used to go to San Diego and that helped me a lot. I think it would be nice to go back when it doesn't get in the way of my camp at Nova Uniao".
Junior dos Santos has been alternating wins and losses since his first rematch against Cain Velasquez, in 2012. He managed to knock out Mark Hunt before losing another title fight to the champion and then defeating Miocic in his last bout.