Junior dos Santos has been in some wars in his UFC career. Despite being the youngest fighter in the top ten of the UFC rankings, he has taken a lot of damage in his 14 fights in the Octagon and didn't look like the same fighter when he lost to Alistair Overeem late last year. He has a chance to redeem himself against Ben Rothwell though, when they meet in the main event of the UFC's first trip to Croatia.
"Yes, there were some tough fights for me. I took a lot of damage, but I get swollen very easy and I get cut very easy too. For the people that were watching the fight, I was looking worse than I really was, you know? Those fights were pretty hard for me, but I’m learning with everything.:
He's not quite sure what happened in the Overeem fight though, where he was stopped late in the second round:
"This one now, with Alistair Overeem, was something very, very strange for me. That’s hard, that’s really hard part of the game."
Despite all the knocks he's picked up though, he's dedicated to the sport and says that he'll be competing for a long, long time:
"(I will fight) as long as I can, you know? I wanna have a long career, for sure," he said. "I know I’m not showing for everybody everything that I got to show, so I’m working on these things. As soon as I find myself in the Octagon again, I’ll be okay to put on a good performance and get back to my winning streak.
"I wanna fight as long as I can. I wanna be like Randy Couture, who fought until he was 47 years old or something. I wanna be one of those guys."
JDS and Rothwell will tangle on April 10th.