Cain Velasquez will finally return to action this weekend in Mexico City as he looks to defend his title as UFC heavyweight champion against Fabricio Werdum. This highly-anticipated event was originally scheduled for last year, but injuries caused Velasquez to pull out of the fight. Now, the two heavyweights will finally meet in the second ever UFC bout in Mexico.
Take a look at how each of these fighters stack up:
Fights out of: San Jose, California
Strengths: Well-rounded, takedowns, power
Fights out of: Los Angeles, California
Strengths: Ground game
Striking: Velasquez is known for being one of the better strikers in the heavyweight division. There’s no doubt his strike output makes people know he can cause serious disruption. However, Werdum has shown that he is a force to be reckoned with as well. His output might be different than that of Velasquez, but his level of striking does damage, even to those we thought to be higher-level strikers. After all, he was “supposed” to get knocked out by Mark Hunt, but he didn’t now did he?
Grappling: Velasquez definitely has the advantage when it comes to grappling. He has an incredible ability to bring his opponents to the ground and knows how to place fighters in disadvantaged positions. Werdum has his moments, but in the end, Velasquez has him beat when it comes to takedowns.
Submissions: Being the most feared Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, Werdum has proved himself with his submission victories. Whether it’s an armbar or triangle choke, Werdum is able to do it from positions most fighters can’t. Velasquez, on the other hand, falls a little short in this category.
Cardio: When it comes to cardio and endurance, Velasquez can go the extra mile. In the heavyweight division, most fighters struggle to go longer than a couple of rounds, simply because their hearts demand more than their larger bodies can give. Velasquez sets a pace that few fighters can match. Werdum better pray he doesn’t end up in a five-round bout because Velasquez’s endurance will beat him out.
Recent Experience: Velasquez has been on a hiatus since October 2013 whereas Werdum has fought two, tough fights since then. It’s not to say that Velasquez can’t bounce back, but we shouldn’t knock Werdum out of the running. After all, he has definitely proved himself.
So who is it going to be? Most people think Velasquez with keep his title; there’s no doubt he has the power and skill to win the fight. However, I think Werdum might give him a little run for his money. Both are exceptional fighters and will bring something different to the table. Regardless, it should be a great fight!
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