Two sides to every story.
Not long after Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White revealed that Alistair Overeem had turned down not one, but two heavyweight fights against Junior dos Santos, "The Reem" explained to MMA Fighting that a rib injury is what kept him from accepting the bout, not fear.
"I'm hurt. Rib problem. So first [I] need an ETA on recovery time. [It] would be unwise to accept any fight before knowing exactly what's up. [I] wouldn't want to pull out of any fight [due to] being unfit, especially an anticipated fight as this one."
Even with his history of trash-talking "Cigano," taking a fight as dangerous as the one against the former 265-pound champion is one any fighter would like to take at full strength. Which Overeem, at the moment, is not.
Which is the same reason why "Demolition Man" bailed on his Dos Santos fight back in 2012.
It's unclear if the Dutch striker suffered the injury during his fight against Frank Mir, which went down at UFC 169 earlier this month in Newark, NJ (watch it). But seeing as how Mir barely laid his hands on Overeem (see the proof here) the injury could have occurred at another time.
Nevertheless, "The Reem" is adamant he isn't "hiding" from Junior, regardless of what White had to say to "UFC Tonight."
Then again, the Las Vegas fight boss does have a tendency to leave out vital pieces of information (according to this guy) when it comes to the reason behind fighters turning down fights.