Right when UFC 226’s heavyweight championship main event concluded, we knew exactly what the next title fight within the division would be.
That, of course, is the return of former UFC champion and WWE star Brock Lesnar who will receive an immediate title shot against new dual-division champion Daniel Cormier once he’s eligible to compete again in January.
Lesnar’s last fight came in July 2016 when he originally defeated Mark Hunt by unanimous decision only to have it overturned to a no contest after failing a drug test due to the usage of banned substances.
Prior to that Lesnar hasn’t won an MMA fight since 2010 when he defeated Shane Carwin at UFC 116. Which has resulted in plenty of frustration from fans and fighters alike about the fact that Lesnar will be gifted a title shot in 2019.
One of those fighters being this Saturday night’s UFC Boise headliner and former UFC champion himself, Junior ‘Cigano’ Dos Santos.
Dos Santos shared his thoughts on the matter when speaking with the Brazilian media on Wednesday (via MMAFighting).
”The return of Brock Lesnar didn’t surprise me.” Dos Santos said, “What surprised me was Cormier, a two-division champion living the moment he was living, the most special moment of his career, calling out Brock Lesnar inside the Octagon. I didn’t understand it, actually. I was shocked with the situation, it became theatrical. It was kind of ridiculous.
I was watching the press conference later and he was explaining that Brock Lesnar is a guy that sells a lot of pay-per-view. So it will be a fight that involves a lot of money for him as well, and he’s getting an easy fight… Not that it’s easy, but it’s an easier fight with a lot to gain financially.”
Many may have forgotten that there was actually a time where Lesnar and Dos Santos were supposed to meet in the Octagon.
They coached opposite one another on season 13 of The Ultimate Fighter which saw Tony Ferguson go on to win it all.
The two were supposed to meet at UFC 131 in Lesnar’s first fight after losing the title to Cain Velasquez. However, Lesnar would be forced to pull out due to injury thus moving the previously mentioned Carwin into his place against Dos Santos.
“[Lesnar getting a title shot isn’t fair but] that doesn’t matter much…if people wanna see it, the UFC has to make it.
That’s completely unfair, but we know that rankings don’t work in the UFC. Rankings are based on a weird policy, but it’s not cool to see Brock Lesnar skipping the line especially because he didn’t stop fighting because he chose to, he failed a drug test for something he has always used, you can clearly see it.
He was cut by USADA and now he returns like it’s something positive, but it’s not. He adds nothing to the sport. He’s a guy that cheats. The only benefit he brings is that people really like watching him, that big guy.”
In the wake of Lesnar’s return, JDS isn’t the only one to be skeptical of Lesnar’s ability to fight clean at 40-years of age and a history of PED use.
“I’ve learned that those who use those types of performance drugs can’t stay without them because they don’t produce testosterone the way they did, they don’t produce HGH they way they should, and many other hormones. To compete at high level, these guys can’t do without it. I don’t know what will be his strategy, but it’s almost certain that he won’t be clean.”
Dos Santos welcomes former WSOF heavyweight champion Blagoy Ivanov to the UFC in the main event of UFC Boise this Saturday night.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/12/2018