UFC 146 Media Call: Junior dos Santos Continues to Question “Heart” of Frank Mir
By FCF Staff
The Ultimate Fighting Championship held a media call today in preparation for the promotion’s upcoming May 26th event in Las Vegas, Nevada.
On the call were the UFC 146 main event competitors heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos and Frank Mir, as well as co-headliner opponents, Cain Velasquez and Antonio “Big Foot” Silva.
Here were some of the call’s highlights:
Mir acknowledged that being the underdog for the upcoming fight with dos Santos has motivated him, and that he also he feels less pressure as a result.
Silva relayed that he is already under 270 pounds heading into the May 26th bout.
Velasquez credited Silva for being well rounded, and in particular, cited the fighter’s striking and ground game.
When asked to comment on criticisms that dos Santos has levied towards Mir, like questioning the former champion’s heart during a recent episode of UFC Prime Time, the latter categorized it as “propaganda.”
Santos was asked to relay why he made the comments about Mir, and he responded by saying that he “doesn’t promote fights by talking trash,” but that he truly believes Mir didn’t show much “heart” during some of his losses.
Silva reported that he’s trained with accomplished wrestlers and strikers during his Florida based, American Top Team camp for this bout.
When asked to compare the heavyweight divisions of Strikeforce and the UFC, “Big Foot” said he faced “three great opponents in Strikeforce,” (Fedor Emelianenko, Fabricio Werdum and Daniel Cormier) before adding that the UFC has the “best fighters in the world.
Velasquez said that he hasn’t done anything too different in preparing for Silva, and that he continues to work on all areas of his game.
Dos Santos said that he always comes in with a strategy to employ and that he’s always prepared to go five rounds.
Mir said that he believes Velasquez is a more “multifaceted threat” than dos Santos, and that you have to worry about more types of weapons because dos Santos usually employs only his boxing.
When asked why he believes Brazilian fans may not care for him, Mir said his wins over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira don’t help, and relayed that apparently some Brazilians were upset with dos Santos for taking photos with Mir during a charity event.
Mir said that after watching Velasquez handle Brock Lesnar, he realized that technique is ultimately more important than strength in terms of fighting bigger fighters.
Velasquez stated that he’s able to let losses “go”, due to his wrestling experiences, and added that he never expected to go undefeated during his MMA career.
“Big Foot” relayed that he’s “very relaxed” about his upcoming UFC debut, and that he doesn’t feel nervous about the fight particularly because he’s the underdog.
When asked why he’s coming for the May 26th bout lighter than normal, Silva said that he decided to do so because Velasquez is a smaller and faster heavyweight.
Velasquez said that he “was excited” upon finding out he would fight Silva, and said that the Brazilian fighter is “one of the best heavyweights out there.”
Mir agreed that there are more talented fighters in the UFC heavyweight division now, and added that it’s “the deepest it’s ever been.”
Silva relayed that the decision to train with American Top Team for this camp, rather than Team Nogueira, was partially because he knows that a bout with dos Santos might happen at a later date.
Dos Santos said that his main motivation is to keep his title rather than avenging Nogueira’s loss to Mir.
UFC 146 will be hosted by the MGM Grand Garden Arena, and the event’s main card will be available via pay-per-view.