Junior Dos Santos Denies Reports That He's Left Team Nogueira

Jeremy BotterMMA Senior WriterFebruary 4, 2014

USA Today

Earlier today, we relayed a report from Brazilian outlet Globo that said former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos had left his longtime home at Team Nogueira and made the switch to Nova Uniao.

The report said there was a bit of bad blood brewing between Dos Santos and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, his longtime mentor. Nogueira's star pupil, the report said, had developed a bit of an attitude problem.

Here's the report, with a translation provided by Reddit user psybomb. Keep in mind that the Brazilian media calls Dos Santos "Gypsy," which is the meaning of his nickname "Cigano:"

Since last week, Gypsy is in Rio de Janeiro and so far didn’t show up at Team Nogueira, a team of brothers and Minotauro Nogueira. Instead, Gypsy has trained in Nova Uniao, a rival team. Minotauro is not a bit happy with the attitude of his former pupil and peer has called Gypsy “vain”. He feels betrayed by his friend who vowed never to face him in a MMA fight.

This afternoon, Dos Santos appears to have poured cold water on those flames. The former champ posted this photo of the Team Nogueira logo on Instagram:

The Brazilian media is often notoriously unreliable, and this appears to be another case of bad information making it to print.

Dos Santos has not competed since losing a title bid to Cain Velasquez at UFC 166 in October. He is 10-2 since debuting in the UFC, with his sole losses coming at the hands of Velasquez, whom he defeated to win the UFC heavyweight championship in November 2011.