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Dos Santos has got to be worried - Mir

ESPN staff
April 24, 2012 « Team GB drawn with Uruguay for Olympic football | Chartbeat test »

Frank Mir has poked at the mental toughness of heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos ahead of UFC 146, questioning how the Brazilian must feel after seeing his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu coach have his arm broken by the man he is going to face.

Mir has been promoted to the main event on May 26 after Alistair Overeem withdrew due to a positive drug test. The fight will represent a chance for Mir to regain the title he was forced to vacate in 2005.

Back then a serious motorcycle accident prompted a 20-month spell on the sidelines for Mir, who initially was not the same fighter when he returned. However, after losing his first bid to regain the title against Brock Lesnar, Mir now has another chance against Dos Santos.

That chance was earned when he became the first man to submit Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, snapping his arm in the process. Nogueira is Dos Santos' BJJ mentor, and Mir admits the champion must be worried about what will happen if the fight hits the mat.

"I do think it has to be a little nerve-racking that the guy you roll with as a coach got submitted by the guy you're about to face," Mir said on The MMA Hour. "That has to be a little bit in the back of your mind.

"I'm sure he fights for his own reasons. I mean, if he says [it's for revenge] to sell pay-per-views, I'm sure it might be thrown out there. But as far as deep down inside, when he's in the locker room getting ready to walk out to face me, when you're a fierce competitor like that, you don't really do it for outside sources.

"If you do it for any other reason other than what's inside you, the internal drive that you have to want to conquer this, it'll fall apart.

"[However], I think it will be a nice feather in his cap if he wins to say, 'Oh I got one for my master'."

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