Cain Velasquez is a fighter.
There's absolutely no question that this is the case after he entered the Octagon at UFC on FOX 1 against Junior Dos Santos with a major injury to his rotator cuff. But that shouldn't surprise anyone as Velasquez has been fighting all his life.
It's well documented that the Velasquez family is the very definition of the American dream. His father, Efrain Velasquez, illegally came from Mexico for a better life and opportunities. He ultimately married Cain's mother, Isabel Velasquez, and gained American citizenship.
Efrain worked in the fields all day to support his family, and that work ethic rubbed off on his son in a big way. Velasquez became a highly sought blue chip prospect after a successful college wrestling career at ASU.
After capturing the UFC heavyweight strap with a first round drubbing of Brock Lesnar, it was expected that Velasquez would hold on to the title for an extended period as champion. But there's a saying about the best laid plans of mice and men.
His title run was cut short that night in Anaheim, California as Dos Santos shocked the world with a 64 second knockout of the champion. But don't look for Velasquez to make any excuses or have any regrets for his decision. He's a fighter after all.
"It was me being a fighter. Junior Dos Santos was hurt as well. We're just guys who like to go out there and fight. I don't think it was the best decision. I did it anyways. It's in the past." Velasquez continued, "you have to go out there and fight, that's it."
It's refreshing to hear one of the top athletes in the sport discuss a loss with such honesty. No one would bat an eye if he tried to pass off his injury as the reason for losing to Dos Santos. That he isn't dwelling on past mistakes shows maturity as a fighter.
Though, that may not be entirely honest. Velasquez has been oozing confidence in the lead up to his rematch with Dos Santos. So much so that he's actually been speaking openly about his game plan for UFC 155.
"I know how he fights. He's really good at his boxing. I just have to fight my style of fight which is a lot of pressure."
While his confidence is at an all-time high, he remains one of the most humble men in the fight promotion. Always soft spoken, Velasquez is apparently a believer in Teddy Roosevelt's Big Stick Theory in which he speaks softly but carries a big stick. It's taken him far.
So fans shouldn't expect him to talk trash or put down his opponent in the build up to the fight. Despite media attention, Velasquez will remain who he is, the quiet fighter who does his talking with his fists.
"I have a lot of respect for Junior. The way he carries himself in the cage. There's no trash talking, just down to business. He's very respectful."
Cain Velasquez looks to recapture the UFC heavyweight title at UFC 155 in Las Vegas, NV against Junior Dos Santos in the main event of the evening.
Matthew Roth is a Featured Columnist. Unless otherwise noted, all quotes attained first hand.
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