Junior Dos Santos preparing for post-UFC career; talking with multiple promotions

Former UFC heavyweight champion, Junior “Cigano” Dos Santos (21-9) is preparing for his next venture in MMA. The former heavyweight champion was released just a few weeks ago by the promotion. 

In the case of Junior Dos Santos, things have changed quickly over the past couple of years. In March of 2019, Dos Santos knocked out Derrick Lewis at a UFC Fight Night. This win put JDS in a title eliminator against Francis Ngannou.

At that point, Cigano had won three fights in a row and he looked like he was the old JDS. However, that is where things turned drastically. Dos Santos was knocked out by Ngannou. After that, he suffered three more knockout losses.

The final loss came to Ciryl Gane at UFC 256. However, that loss is currently being appealed by JDS and his team due to the final blow being around the back of the head. Nevertheless, it’s a loss as of right this second.

After that loss, the UFC decided to let Dos Santos walk. The promotion had been making cuts over the past couple of months and after the fourth straight loss, the writing was on the wall for the former heavyweight champion.

Where will JDS go after the UFC?

Dos Santos appeared on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show this week where he talked about his future. He said that his team is talking with multiple promotions and that he is training as we speak. However, he said that he’d like at least three months to prepare for his next fight.

The former UFC champion already has offers on the table that his team is working through. Obviously, Bellator is being rumored right now. Bellator is needing a little star power in their heavyweight division and JDS would certainly bring that to their heavyweight division.

However, they are not the only game in town for the former UFC champion. PFL is also being rumored, however, they are looked at as a long shot given where they currently stand. PFL already has their heavyweight roster set for their 2021 season.

Time will tell what the next move will be for JDS. If I had to put money on it, I think it’s likely that he ends up in Bellator. Again, their heavyweight division could use some bigger names and despite the losing streak, Cigano would be a great signing for them.