At UFC 166 at the Toyota Center in Houston, the world’s two best heavyweights entered the Octagon and after nearly five rounds of pure, unadulterated one-sided brutality, a true colossus of MMA was born.
Cain Velasquez, drenched in his adversary’s blood, rose from the fire and ash that is a title fight of such magnitude and now sits atop the UFC’s heavyweight division. The runner-up in this violent marathon was Junior dos Santos and having all but cleaned out the weight class himself over the last five or six years, sequesters himself distinctly as the world’s No. 2 heavyweight.
And this would be perfectly acceptable in maybe every other weight class but not heavyweight. Because this was the second time in one calendar year Velasquez has pulverized dos Santos beyond recognition.
The problem is that no heavyweight outside of Velasquez stands even a chance of defeating dos Santos. So after yet another display of mastery over “Cigano,” Velasquez turned what was already a two-man race into an out of control runaway.
The division belongs to Velasquez. And the matchups the UFC makes in the near future could have dire consequences if not drawn up properly.
As great as dos Santos is, it would be terrible for the sport to see anything remotely similar to the division’s dark age that pitted Tim Sylvia and Andrei Arlovski against one another in what seemed to be an endless series, owing to the sheer lack of viable contenders.
The division may technically be more talented than it’s ever been, but the discrepancy between Velasquez and dos Santos and every other heavyweight could very well force something alike the Sylvia-Arlovski conundrum just alluded to.
In hopes of preventing that, here are five fights the UFC’s heavyweight title picture needs to see happen.