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UFC 166: Junior Dos Santos thought he was finished in the second round

Today some scary news was released regarding the main event of UFC 166. Junior Dos Santos, according to, does not remember most of his UFC 166 fight against Cain Velasquez. The really disturbing part of this news is that Dos Santos believed he was finished in the second round, and from that point on he was fighting on auto-pilot. Dos Santos could not remember the post-fight interview he had with Joe Rogan either.

Dos Santos was battered yet again at the hands of the champion, Cain Velasquez, in the main event of UFC 166. The fight was finished in the fifth round, when JDS hit his head on the Octagon floor very hard in an attempt at a submission. Dos Santos was simply too battered and beaten to continue.

The fight was almost stopped in round 3 when Herb Dean literally touched Cain Velasquez with intention to stop the fight, but pulled off. Dana White said that Junior ‘was too tough for his own good’ in that fight. Today’s disturbing news definitely raises some questions as to why the fight was not stopped earlier either by the referee, his corner throwing in the towel, or the ringside doctor.

Dos Santos is a man with a ton of heart, but news like this brings to light the brutality of this sport. We all love this sport and the fighters, but safety must be of the utmost importance. The Heavyweight title fight should have been stopped multiple times. Junior was prepared to go out on his shield, but is that really the safest option?

Hopefully news like this will be kept in mind next time a fighter is ‘too tough for his own good’.

Tags: Cain Velasquez Junior Dos Santos UFC 166

  • Christopher Flores

    Velasquez may have given JDS the worst beating of his life… but, until the very end, JDS fought and he was still shelling out massive punches that, everyone saw, hurt Velasquez.

    Great heart from both fighters. Both men denounced all criticism of their abilities. Velasquez came out on top in grand fasion and for it, he deserves to be champion.

    • Alex Schlinsky

      I absolutely agree with you about both men’s heart. Regardless it is still worrisome that JDS could not remember fighting for 3 rounds. I love this sport, but I do not want to see significant injuries because a corner, ref, or doc refused to stop the fight.

      • Christopher Flores

        It’s an opinionated argument. On the one hand, we can all see (able to review the video at will) that JDS was obviously hurt, but the ref (Herb Dean), the doctors, and his corner all saw JDS as being able to fight.

        First, the ref, Herb Dean. My personal favorite ref. I’ve yet to disagree with a call he made, and that includes this one. We all saw him ready to stop the fight, but he didn’t. Whether we disagree with it or not, Dean saw reason to allow the fight to continue and I don’t see any concrete reason to dispute him, even with what we know about the fight now.

        The doctors were probably the closest to the stoppage than anyone. They checked JDS frequently from (if I’m not mistaken) the second round on. And I saw them checking him between rounds, so they had several opportunities to stop the fight if they felt they should. But, they have standardized tests to determine if a fighter is capable of fighting and JDS passed those tests every time. When asked if he wanted to continue, JDS said yes. What more could they do?

        And his corner? How do you throw in the towel on a fighter who, although losing, is still throwing hard punches and elbows. From what they could see, JDS was still fighting. ANd when you’re JDS and you’re still fighting, you still have a real chance of winning. It’s a really tough call, whether you agree with the decision or not. Cain Velasquez is undergoing examination to determine if JDS broke his jaw. JDS was in that fight until the very end. He really is too tough for his own good, but you know what? That’s just how some fighters fight. This was a really special fight to both men and both were willing to go as far as they could to get the win.

        It’s easy to say these things in hindsight, but decisions have to be made in the moment and for better or worse, I think they made the right call. I admire JDS for his heart and respect his ability to stay in this fight. He was a very real threat to Cain’s title until the stoppage, we should all remember that. That’s why I don’t believe the stoppage was a bad call.

        • Alex Schlinsky

          Hey chris, thanks for reading! I happened to see the video again, and Herb Dean actually was not trying to stop the fight when he touched Cain. He was warning Cain not to grab the fence! If you watch it again, JDS stumbles to his feet where Cain follows and grabs the fence. That is when Herb Dean steps in and touches Cain to tell him to take his hand off. In the commotion, however, it seemed he was about to stop the fight, but that was not the case.

          • Christopher Flores

            You know, I thought that’s what happened when the fight was airing because I saw Cain’s hand in the fence. Guess I kinda forgot that when it started being called an “almost, but not quite, stoppage”.

            Still, I’m certain stopping the fight went through Dean’s head several times. I know it went through mine.

          • Alex Schlinsky

            I absolutely did not realize that was why Dean touched Cain. I 100% thought it was going to be stopped. In earnest, I think it should have been, but to his credit JDS toughed it out. He is a true warrior, but forgetting he fought round 3-5 is a bit scary to me. There is a lot riding on Main Events like this that sometimes it makes me believe a fighters safety is not #1 priority but like #1a you know?

          • Christopher Flores

            Yeah, but this wasn’t your typical championship fight. Velasquez and JDS built a rivalry, not just around each other, but around the belt. It was definitive proof that the whole of the UFC will see one of these two as the reigning champion (baring a flash-submission by Werdum, I still wouldn’t bet on it against either figher, but I think he’s got a better chance against Cain if Cain continues to focus primarily on grappling).

            But, remember JDS vs Carwin? There’s more room to argue the stoppage there… A lot more… and how did that turn out? In the final seconds, Carwin locked in a submission hold that, with 10 more seconds would have completely altered the HW division. After that fight, Carwin mentioned that he couldn’t remember anything after just getting into the cage. That’s pretty bad for 3 rounds.

            A fighters health is important, but going into a fight, he knows what he’s getting into. It’s not like JDS was out, or even not fighting back. So, it comes down to the call and for the simple fact that the call is debatable is why I choose to believe the officials made the right call. These are fighters and they’re fighting. It’d be ideal if this sort of thing could be caught as it’s happening, but it’s really one of those things you don’t see coming unless the fighter has to be helped out of the cage and JDS was walking around just fine after the fight.

            So, it’s really hard to say, but (maybe just this once), I’m going to believe the officials made the right call.

  • fnad

    A gif from the 3rd round when JDS was knocked out