When Cain Velasquez knocked out Antonio Rodrigo Minotauro Nogueira in stunning fashion at UFC 110 he put the UFC’s heavyweight class on notice.
I hope Brock Lesnar was watching. It’s okay if he wasn’t though, because he is going to see a lot of Cain Velasquez in the future.
Cain Velasquez is the single biggest threat to Lesnar’s heavyweight title. It is likely that Dana White will require Velasquez to dispose of one more heavyweight contender before getting a shot at the title, but it is only a matter of time.
Cain Velasquez can and will.
Let’s breakdown the potential clash of these two heavyweight titans.
Both men are listed as boxer, but it is clear that Lesnar is really just a puncher, while Velasquez has really developed into a boxer.
Lesnar’s fists are like cinderblocks, and he packs incredible power. However, Velasquez is also one of the most powerful athletes in the heavyweight class. If you weren’t a believer in Velasquez’s raw power before his knockout of Big Nog, you have to be now.
I am not going to go as far as to say that Velasquez is as powerful as Lesnar, but I think there is not question that both men have the ability to knockout each other out with their fists.
Velasquez’s advantage is his boxing ability. If he fights intelligently and utilizes his boxing skills, he could have a big advantage in the punching game.
Lesnar moves very well for a big man, but he can’t match Velasquez’s speed and explosiveness.
A last thing that Velasquez has going for him is his ability to throw head kicks. While it isn’t a big part of his stand-up game, Velasquez has shown the ability to throw vicious head kicks.
Lesnar has seen very little in the way of high kicks, and it will be interesting to see how he reacts if Velasquez aim a kick to the side of his head.
Both men are accomplished wrestlers, and the chances of this fight ending up on the ground are very good.
Lesnar is a world class wrestler, and it would be disrespectful to him to say that Velasquez is his equal in that area.
However, Velasquez is a phenomenal wrestler, who will not be overwhelmed by Lesnar if the fight ends up on the ground.
Velasquez is big enough and strong enough to control Lesnar from the guard, something that none of Lesnar’s previous opponents can claim.
Velasquez would also represent Lesnar’s first opponent that has the skill and strength to put Lesnar on his back. If he does get Lesnar on his back, it will be interesting to see how Lesnar reacts since we’ve seen very little of him in that position.
Velasquez’s ground and pound is vicious. If he can get Lesnar into a favorable position, he could easily finish the fight from the top. Of course, the same can be said about Lesnar.
Neither fighter counts Jiu-Jitsu as a strength, but Velasquez is a purple belt with the ability to pull submissions. We haven’t seen him win by submission in the UFC, but as Frank Mir proved in their first bout, Lesnar is prone to getting caught in submissions.
Lesnar has been working on his Jiu-Jitsu and has shown improvement, but is clearly outclassed by Velasquez in this area.
Don’t expect Jiu-Jitsu to play a huge role in this bout, but be aware that Velasquez might try to catch Lesnar in something, especially if Cain is on his back.
Both men are extremely fit and able to push the pace. Also, both have had one fight go a full three rounds in the UFC, and both won by unanimous decision.
It’s hard to say which man would have an advantage of the fight went into round four or five since neither man has been there.
One would lean to saying that the smaller man, Velasquez, would have the advantage late, but Lesnar has proved to be such a physical specimen, that it is tough to lean one way or the other.
If the fight were go deep into the later rounds, the conditioning piece would be the great unknown factor in the bout. However, with the way these two fight, it seems likely that it would not last that long.
Velasquez defeats Lesnar by stoppage due to strikes in the third round. I am confident that Velasquez will be able to outbox Lesnar, and force Lesnar to rely on his wrestling.
Lesnar will be able to get Velasquez to the ground, but Velasquez will be able to control Lesnar much more so than Mir or Randy Couture were.
Using his strength and Jiu-Jitu skills, Velasquez will end on top of Lesnar, and get the stoppage using his brutal ground and pound.
It’s an epic brawl that ends with Cain Velasquez being the UFC heavyweight champion of the world.
Come on Dana White, make it happen!