Those hopes were dashed in less than 24 hours when UFC President Dana White tweeted that the matchup is unlikely, and the organization is looking at a summer date for the originally scheduled bout.
Dana White @danawhite
@CapnHancock @markhunt1974 @junior_cigano not lookin good. Cigano vs Overeem in the summer2013-3-7 06:00:03
Hunt moved up to No. 9 in the official UFC Rankings after his knockout performance over Stefan Struve. A win over Dos Santos would have given him five straight victories and a compelling argument for a shot at the UFC Heavyweight Championship. It would have been a remarkable storyline entering the fight with Dos Santos.
Hunt told MMAFighting.com that he was “down” to fight the powerful striker.
Ana Guedes, Dos Santos’ attorney and representative, told B/R’s Damon Martin that her client's position is, “I don't choose my opponents. So if they choose for me to fight Overeem and I have to wait so be it and if they decide there's another guy I should fight, then bring it on.”
Social media was alive and well with support for the potential Hunt vs. Dos Santos tilt. The support even came from current UFC fighters. Unfortunately, it looks like that fight is dead.
Michael Chiesa @MikeMav22
I demand @markhunt1974 steps in to fight @junior_cigano. This could be a real life Rocky Balboa story right here.2013-3-7 02:55:22
The good news, however, is that Overeem and Dos Santos will still meet.
Summer will get another prime-time fight now that the highly anticipated heavyweight fight has been pushed back. This has been a fight a long time in the making. The first time it looked to happen, Overeem tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone.
After each man lost their most recent bouts, the stars aligned once again for the two powerful strikers to meet. Then Overeem pulled out due to the aforementioned injury. Instead of finding a replacement for Overeem, the UFC will move the fight back to make sure they capitalize on the opportunity.
It is unfortunate that Hunt will not get the chance to pull off another upset in his remarkable comeback story, but the heavyweight fight fans have been asking for is still on for the summer. A brutal finish is still in the cards when Overeem and Dos Santos exchange leather this summer.
No date for the bout has been set at this time.