Junior dos Santos vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik targeted for UFC 252

Mandatory Credit: Kelly Ross – USA TODAY Sports & Amber Searls – USA TODAY Sports

A heavyweight pairing between former UFC heavyweight titleholder, Junior ‘Cigano’ dos Santos, and knockout artist, Jairzinho ‘Bigi Boy’ Rozenstruik is currently in the works to feature at UFC 252 on August 15th. – with a location and venue yet to be confirmed by the promotion.

dos Santos and Rozenstruik are teammates at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida, and in August, will attempt to both rebound from devastating knockout losses. Brazilian favourite, dos Santos dropped a second-round stoppage to perennial division contender, Curtis Blaydes at UFC Fight Night Raleigh in January. Suriname striker, Rozenstruik dropped a stunning-knockout defeat himself, inside twenty-seconds opposite Francis Ngannou at UFC 249 in May. News of the targeted matchup was first penned by Combate reporters, Marcelo Barone and Raphael Marinho.

Prior to his two-consecutive knockout losses to Blaydes, and the above-mentioned, Ngannou – Santa Catarina native, dos Santos had embarked on an impressive three-fight winning rise, which included finishes of Derrick Lewis, and Tai Tuivasa, after a unanimous decision win over former WSOF heavyweight best, Blagoy Ivanov.

The shocking knockout loss to Ngannou marked Rozenstruik’s first blemish of his eleven fight career. Debuting in just February of last year, he scored a second-round stoppage of dos Santos’ compatriot, Júnior Albini. In stunning victories since, the 32-year-old finished both Allen Crowder and former division titleholder, Andrei Arlovski in the opening round.

In the biggest victory of his brief career to date, Rozenstruik rallied against decorated kickboxing-ace, Alistair ‘The Demolition Man’ Overeem, to take a final-frame knockout, with just five seconds remaining in the headliner. Overeem required plastic surgery on his lip after the event – in a bout he was winning on all three judge’s scorecards.


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