When Alistair Overeem was forced to withdraw from his scheduled UFC 146 title fight against dos Santos, Frank Mir was chosen as his replacement. The UFC had to come up with a new angle to hype the new fight and they chose to include the fact that Mir has defeated one of dos Santos’ trainers and mentors, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, twice in brutal fashion.
Dos Santos has maintained that this wasn’t something he drew motivation from, but his portrayal on the UFC Primetime series indicated otherwise; Dos Santos questioned Mir’s fortitude and manhood in a heated conversation with Big Nog. And just in case anyone is thinking that this is just part of the UFC hype machine, dos Santos wants to make it clear that he says what he means and never lies to hype a fight.
“I don’t promote fights by talking trash,” said the champ. “What I say, I say because I believe it. I confirm and I stand by what I said and what I meant by that remark is that I feel Frank Mir lacks heart and lacks the ability to perceive through tough spots in a fight. That’s my personal opinion, that’s what I truly believe.”
Fortunately for Mir, who rebounded from a horrific motorcycle accident to rejoin the heavyweight top ten and who very recently fought back from the brink of defeat to snap the arm of a man previously considered the best heavyweight ground tactician ever, questions of his manhood don’t affect him too much.
“Obviously, nobody likes to hear anybody say anything negative about them,” Mir admitted in regards to dos Santos’ comments. “But I just broke down on why he said what he said when he backed it up on certain fights and I looked at it — I have no issues with my manhood. I guess I took it as him just trying to sell the fight and trying to be a little bit more, I guess, stir the pot. Dos Santos, I think, has done better as far as a fighter in the octagon than he has as far trying to sell the fight. So, it’s something that he’s new at and maybe not that successful at.”
Dos Santos and Mir will do battle this Saturday at UFC 146, which is scheduled to take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.