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Junior dos Santos calls for Ngannou rematch with UFC 252 win: ‘He has no really good skills’

Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos is hoping to steal the spotlight later tonight (Sat., Aug. 15, 2020) at UFC 252 live on ESPN+ pay-per-view (PPV) from inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, and land a rematch with heavyweight top contender Francis Ngannou.

Dos Santos, who will be matched up against Jairzinho Rozenstruik as part of UFC 252’s PPV main card, fought Ngannou just over one year ago. It was a main event clash at UFC on ESPN 3 and “Predator” ended up finishing JDS just 71 seconds into the first round. In total, Ngannou has finished each of his last four trips to the Octagon via first-round knockout or TKO.

As dos Santos readies himself for a crucial battle with Rozenstruick tonight at UFC 252 he can’t help but focus on a potential rematch with Ngannou. After all, JDS believes he’s a better all-around striking on the feet than the consensus No. 1 knockout specialist in MMA today.

“That is very important to me. That is a fight I have to do in my career, especially because he was trying to talk down on my boxing,” dos Santos said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “Everyone knows me as the best boxer in the heavyweight division and now he is saying he is because he knocked out. He is far away from having good technique. He has power but no really good skills as we could see in his last fight he was just throwing heavy punches. I can’t wait to fight him again.”

Ngannou, who is currently 10-2 inside of the Octagon with all wins coming by way of finish, is likely going to hold out for a shot at the UFC heavyweight title, which will be up for grabs later tonight at UFC 252 as current champion Stipe Miocic takes on Daniel Cormier in a trilogy bout. “Predator” came up short against Miocic in 2018 and has been clawing his way back to secure a title shot ever since.

In addition to his potential rematch with Ngannou, “Cigano” is also hoping to one day meet Miocic inside of the Octagon again. Dos Santos defeated Miocic back in 2014 via decision before Miocic evened the score with a TKO win over JDS in 2017. It may be hard for dos Santos to wiggle his way into a title fight anytime soon, but maybe he’ll get his chance to settle his own trilogy with Miocic if the champion happens to lose to Cormier at UFC 252.

“It needs to happen. I admire Miocic a lot. He is a great champion,” dos Santos explained. “I can’t wait to have the chance to fight him again. I know he has great skills. Like I said before, I have what it takes to beat all of them again.”

At this point in his career, dos Santos still possesses enough skill and gas in the tank to make another run at UFC gold. He is currently riding his first two-fight losing streak of his MMA career but a win over Rozenstruick at UFC 252 should right the ship and allow “Cigano” to make his push entering 2021.

MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 252 fight card this weekend RIGHT HERE, starting with the ESPN+/Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on ESPN+/ESPN at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+.