Tag:Cain Velasquez
Posted on: October 24, 2010 1:15 am
Edited on: September 20, 2011 7:58 pm

New champ Velasquez frustrates, outclasses Lesnar

Cain Velasquez pulled a Brock Lesnar on Brock Lesnar Saturday night.

Velasquez became the UFC heavyweight champion with a convincing TKO win over Lesnar at 4:12 of Round 1, causing the live crowd at UFC 121 to go in hysterics cheering for the kind-natured but highly skilled young fighter.

Cain Velasquez (Getty Images) Lesnar was every bit the oversized, overly grumpy and freakishly strong athlete in this fight that he had been in his victories. But another of his more pronounced personality traits is his lack of patience. That came through in a series of awkward mistakes, such as swatting, backfisted jabs and an almost comical stumble across the cage to escape from a takedown.

You can't make mistakes like that at the championship level and expect to remain the champion. Especially not with a guy like Velasquez ready to capitalize on every error. Not only did Velasquez make the best of Lesnar's mistakes, but he also negated the things Lesnar did right. The result was a Brock Lesnar fight in which Lesnar, for the second time in as many fights, played the role of the punching bag.

Lesnar came out fast with fists and knees, including an uncharacteristic flying knee. He established a breakneck pace in the opening seconds against an opponent that figured to have the clear endurance advantage. First mistake.

Lesnar took Velasquez down to the mat, but Velasquez -- himself a stud collegiate wrestler before entering MMA -- scrambled to his feet before suffering any real damage. Velasquez answered with his own takedown, and even though Lesnar escaped to his feet after some fists on the ground, it seemed the psychological damage may have been done. Lesnar's not used to fighting guys he can't hold down, let alone guys who can pop right back up and give him a receipt.

Brute force and elite-level wrestling were not going to be enough to beat Velasquez. Lesnar reacted to this by throwing all form out the window and swatting wildly at Velasquez and trying to muscle his way back into an advantageous position.

Second mistake.

Velasquez was known before the fight to have the far better striking technique. Lesnar may or may not have possessed the heavier hands, but that doesn't matter. Both men hit hard enough. Velasquez clearly hurt Lesnar with a knee, and from there, Lesnar went into full-on retreat mode.

Velasquez threw strikes. Lesnar covered up. He simply did not have the skill or strategy to quickly adjust to Velasquez's onslaught. As a result, we have a new UFC heavyweight champion, with a perfect 9-0-0 MMA record and a whole lot of upside.

Velasquez is only going to get better, folks. Ponder that for a minute.

As for Lesnar, there will be those who claim he was exposed by this loss. If you didn't realize he was green before, then yes, this loss probably opened your eyes a bit. But Lesnar was never known for being well-rounded.

What worked for Lesnar up until Saturday night were his size, strength, wrestling ability and incredible self-confidence. Save for possibly that last one, Lesnar still has all of those attributes. And that's still more than enough to earn victories over just about anybody other than Cain Velasquez. This is not the end of Brock Lesnar, title threat. Champions need contenders. Until somebody else can do to Lesnar what Velasquez did, Lesnar will be that guy, sooner or later.

But right now, it sure doesn't look as though anybody can beat Cain Velasquez at his best. And at 28, he's just getting started.

Posted on: February 21, 2010 12:22 am
Edited on: February 21, 2010 3:45 pm

UFC 110 live results: Nogueira vs. Velasquez

Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira introduces Cain Velasquez to the upper echelon, and tries to become the first fighter to deal him an MMA loss.

Round 1: They exchange fists with Nogueira landing the only clean shot. Leg kick by Velasquez. Body kick by Velasquez is countered by Nogueira with a straight left. Outside leg kick by Velasquez. They exchange fists again with both guys landing. Nogueira with a pair of jabs and Velasquez with a leg kick. Velsquez with a knee, followed by a pair of fists. Nogueira landed one counterpunch. Nogueira lands a right hand and Velasquez absolutely crushes him with a right uppercut that sends Nogueira to the canvas. Velasquez also landed a left while Nogueira was falling, but the right uppercut put Nogueira out. Incredible finish, and the fact that he did it to Nogueira is reason for the heavyweight division to take notice.

Winner: Cain Velasquez defeats Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira via knockout from a right uppercut at 2:20 of Round 1.

The scary thing about Velasquez is that he's still a rookie, and he's probably going to get much better than he is right now. He's got one-punch knockout power, superior wrestling ability and he's probably got the best speed and stamina in the entire division.

The winner of Shane Carwin vs. Frank Mir gets a title shot at Brock Lesnar this summer. It's safe to say that no matter who emerges from that scenario with the championship -- even if it's Lesnar -- they will have a major threat on their hands when they are finally tasked with fighting Velasquez.

This dude is for real.

Posted on: February 19, 2010 4:25 pm

UFC 110 live blog

We're back again this Saturday with a live round-by-round blog of the main card for UFC 110, headlined by Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Cain Velasquez in a heavyweight clash.

The blog will begin between 9:30 and 9:45 p.m. ET with quickie undercard results, followed by complete details of each main-card bout as it happens live.

Here's the card:

  • Nogueira vs. Velasquez (Hwt.)
  • Wanderlei Silva vs. Michael Bisping (Mwt.)
  • Joe Stevenson vs. George Sotiropoulos (Lwt.)
  • Keith Jardine vs. Ryan Bader (Light Hwt.)
  • Mirko Cro Cop vs. Anthony Perosh (Hwt.)
  • Stephan Bonnar vs. Krzysztof Soszynski (Light Hwt.)
  • Chris Lytle vs. Brian Foster (Wwt.)
  • CB Dollaway vs. Goran Reljic (Mwt.)
  • James Te Huna vs. Igor Pokrajac (Light Hwt.)

Mirko Cro Cop was originally supposed to face Ben Rothwell . Rothwell pulled out of the fight this week after coming down with an ailment of some sort after arriving in Australia.

In Rothwell's place, Cro Cop now fights Perosh, an Australian fighter that is 0-2 in UFC bouts (lost to Christian Wellisch and Jeff Monson , both in 2006).

Also, Elvis "The King of Rock and Rumble" Sinosic pulled out of his fight vs. Chris Haseman with a hurt shoulder. That fight was completely scrapped due to the UFC not having enough time to find a replacement opponent for Haseman.

See you Saturday for the live blog.

Follow Denny Burkholder on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/dennyburkhol

Posted on: October 24, 2009 11:41 pm
Edited on: October 24, 2009 11:57 pm

UFC 104 live results: Velasquez vs. Rothwell

Undefeated heavyweight Cain Velasquez tries for his fifth straight UFC win in a battle against former IFL heavyweight champion Ben Rothwell, who makes his UFC debut.

Rothwell has won 14 of his last 15 fights, with the one loss being a third-round KO at the hands of Andrei Arlovski for the former Affliction fight promotion.

Round 1: Velasquez throws a body kick and Rothwell answers with straight punches. Rothwell with another combo off a Velasquez kick. Velasquez with a takedown. Rothwell tries to get up with his back to the fence. Rothwell gets up and Velasquez dumps him with a high takedown. Rothwell escapes. Velasquez lands some solid punches in a pair of exchanges. Velasquez with a single-leg takedown and some elbows from the top. Velasquez has side control. Velasquez lands a couple of fists from the top. Rothwell tries to escape and gets tripped to his back. More elbows by Velasquez. Velasquez throws punches from the top. Velasquez tries to take his back for a choke, but then switches to full mount. Rothwell pops his hips to escape and Velasquez goes right back to ground and pound. Velasquez stands over Rothwell and unloads with serious bombs from the top. Rothwell is getting dominated here, and is now bleeding. He just can't get up from beneath Velasquez. Miraculously, the round ends without Rothwell being finished. 10-8 Velasquez. He's just too much of an athlete, and his wrestling is far too advanced for Rothwell.

Round 2: Rothwell whiffs on a head kick. He looks out on his feet. Velasquez with a single leg takedown. Rothwell goes to kis knees and Velasquez smashes him with several hard uppercuts. Rothwell scrambles with his back to the cage, trying to get back to his feet. Velasquez obliterates him with five consecutive lefts to the face and referee Steve Mazzagatti stops the fight. Rothwell immediately protests the stoppage. Velasquez was clearly dominating the fight, but Rothwell does have a history of being able to take a lot of punishment. The thing is, if you aren't answering strikes like that, you're putting the referee in a position to make that call. Such is MMA.

Winner: Cain Velasquez defeats Ben Rothwell via TKO due to strikes at 58 seconds of Round 2.

Velasquez said after the fight that he didn't think Rothwell was finished, and that the fight could have gone longer. He felt Rothwell was still posturing up and trying to escape from the spot.
Posted on: June 13, 2009 4:45 pm
Edited on: June 13, 2009 5:22 pm

UFC 99 live results: Kongo vs. Velasquez

Cain Velasquez faces the biggest test of his young career -- and a fight that could propel him into much bigger things, if he wins -- as he fights Cheick Kongo.

Velasquez's American Kickboxing Academy teammate Mike Swick is back out to help work his corner, shortly after winning his own fight.

Round 1: Velasquez closes the distance quickly and Kongo lands a few left jabs. Kongo rocks Velasquez with a right hand that drops him to a knee momentarily, then Velasquez takes Kongo down. Kongo trying to get up but Velasquez is keeping him down. Velasquez mounts him. Kongo rolls, and Velasquez takes his back for a rear naked choke. Kongo rolls out and gets to his feet. Velasquez tosses him back to the mat. Velasquez mounts him again. Fists to the face by Velasquez. Kongo on his knees with Velasquez hammering him with fists. Velasquez is just dominating the positioning here, exposing Kongo's wrestling weakness. Kongo's up -- Kongo's down again, and Cain lands in side control. Kongo gets to his knees and Velasquez uses a crossface neck crank to make him regret it. Kongo gets to his feet and lands a knee to the body as the round ends. 10-9 Velasquez.

Round 2: They exchange fists with Velasquez landing a few good shots, but once again, Kongo clips him on the chin with a right and Velasquez drops to a knee. Velasquez with a takedown attempt and eventually gets Kongo down. Velasquez with a series of right hands to the jaw and then a knee to the ribs. Kongo's just on his knees eating whatever strikes Velasquez can work in, because he's helpless against Velasquez's wrestling technique, and at this point, Kongo is also physically worn out from the energy needed to grapple for close to 10 minutes. Kongo's holding Velasquez's wrist, so Cain throws more knees to the ribs. The round ends with Velasquez doing this. 10-9 Velasquez, but you get the idea that one strike could end this for Kongo, if he can sneak it in before getting taken down.

Round 3: Kongo with a fist and then a takedown attempt. Kongo actually gets the takedown for a brief second, but Velasquez is so good that it's only a few seconds before Kongo's on his knees again, eating strikes. Velasquez is hammering away with fists from all angles. Kongo finally gets up and lands some knees from the clinch. Kongo with a right hand and rocks Velasquez one more time, and tries very hard to avoid the takedown that follows, but can't. Velasquez has Kongo in full mount. He's striking from the top. Kongo punching up from the bottom. Velasquez finishes the rounc with a flurry of shots from the top. 10-9 Velasquez again, so it should be a 30-27 win for the newcomer.

Winner: Cain Velasquez defeats Cheick Kongo via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) after three rounds.

"It wasn't good enough for me, I know it wasn't good enough for my coaches," Velasquez said about his performance.

Kongo ate an unreal number of unanswered punches but never appeared on the verge of getting knocked out. That either says a lot about his skull, or reveals that Velasquez's punches aren't as heavy as once thought. Perhaps both. Either way, you have to wonder what a guy like Brock Lesnar -- who can match Velasquez's wrestling -- would have done if he'd landed the same right hands to Velasquez's chin that Kongo did. I'm sure we'll see that fight someday.

Posted on: May 22, 2009 10:58 pm
Edited on: May 22, 2009 11:09 pm

Late changes spruce up UFC 98, 99 cards

There are times when a UFC fight gets a whole lot more interesting due to a late change of opponents. Over the course of the past three days, that has happened twice.

In the most time-sensitive switch, Chris Wilson was scratched from Saturday's UFC 98 card with barely two days' notice, after the Nevada State Athletic Commission could not get Wilson's doctor on the phone to provide necessary medical information. The NSAC reportedly left numerous messages for the doctor and simply never got a call back. As a result, the commission was left with no choice but to pull Wilson from the show.

Wilson's replacement against Brock Larson will be Mike "Quicksand" Pyle (17-5-1), an Xtreme Couture fighter making his UFC debut after lots of experience elsewhere, including EliteXC, Affliction, Strikeforce, WEC and the IFL. Pyle has won his last four fights (all via submission), and six of his past seven bouts. Pyle's only loss during that stretch was to Jake Shields in Nov. 2007.

Earlier this week, another late switch resulted in an intriguing heavyweight battle that just might put the winner on the radar for a possible title shot vs. Brock Lesnar (or Frank Mir , pending the outcome of that title fight at July's UFC 100).

"The Texas Crazy Horse" Heath Herring pulled out of his UFC 99 bout vs. up-and-comer Cain Velasquez on June 13 in Germany, citing either illness (as reported by MMA FanHouse) or injury (as reported by the UFC) as the cause. Either way, his replacement is a solid test for the former collegiate wrestling standout, as Velasquez will now battle Cheick Kongo .

Kongo (14-4-1, 7-2-0 UFC) has won five of his last six fights, with the only loss in that time frame coming at the hands of Herring in March of 2008. Since then, Kongo has made quick work of Dan Evensen , Mustapha Al-Turk and Antoni Hardonk .

Velasquez (5-0-0, 3-0-0 UFC) won his first four fights via knockout in the first round, and his most recent bout -- vs. Denis Stojnic at February's UFC Fight Night 17 -- via TKO at 2:34 of Round 2.

A standout wrestler at Arizona State, Velsaquez has the athleticism, punching power and solid wrestling base that has many observers calling him the future of the UFC heavyweight division, and a potential rival to Lesnar in years to come.

Posted on: November 20, 2008 7:29 pm
Edited on: November 20, 2008 7:36 pm

UFC re-hires Fitch after he agrees to rights deal

In a follow-up to the story on the UFC's falling-out with American Kickboxing Academy fighters over their refusal to sign over the lifetime rights to their names and likenesses for video games, both Jon Fitch and Christian Wellisch were re-hired Thursday, according to a report by MMARated.com.

Fitch reportedly contacted UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta directly and agreed to sign the rights agreement after all, and was subsequently re-hired. His fight at UFC 94 with Akihiro Gono is back on.

Wellisch, according to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer newsletter, had agreed all along to sign the rights agreement, but was fired anyway when UFC president Dana White had a falling out with manager DeWayne Zinkin, who represents many UFC fighters both independently and in cooperation with Bob Cook at AKA. Wellisch also got his job back today.

Meltzer reports that the other fighters in question -- which include Josh Koscheck and Cain Velasquez, along with possible others -- due to the rights agreement issue are still in negotiations.

Posted on: November 20, 2008 10:35 am
Edited on: November 20, 2008 10:49 am

UFC cuts Fitch, Wellisch, more possibly to come

The UFC has cut top welterweight Jon Fitch from his contract over a dispute regarding the rights to his name and likeness, several outlets reported on Wednesday. Christian Wellisch has also been cut by the UFC, reportedly over the same issue.

The dispute began over the UFC's attempt to get its fighters to sign over the lifetime rights to their names and likenesses for use in video games as the UFC saw fit -- a deal AKA management, under Bob Cook, advised its fighters not to sign.

Fitch appeared on Hardcore Sports Radio's 'Road Rage' on Wednesday to give his side of the story. In a story posted on Sherdog.com on Wednesday, Fitch was quoted as telling the radio show that the UFC cut fellow AKA fighter Wellisch first, "I think as kind of a scare for me and (Josh) Koscheck and Cain (Velasquez)."

Fitch believes both Koscheck and Velasquez will be cut over the rights dispute as well, but since both are on winning streaks -- and since Koscheck recently bailed out the organization by fighting Thiago Alves on less than two weeks' notice, and is slated to headline against Yoshiyuki Yoshida on Dec. 10 -- neither can be cut immediately.

“I guess Cain Velasquez wouldn't sign under his contract and they were saying that after his fight he was done and they weren't going to re-up his contract," Fitch said, as quoted by Sherdog. "I think the same thing goes for Koscheck. I think they would drop him right now too, if he wasn't fighting on the 10th, if he wasn't headlining that show -- so they can't drop him."

Fitch had no problem with signing over his likeness for the game, but the details -- the fact that it was a lifetime deal, that the fighters got no compensation at all for the deal outside of the exposure of having their character in the video game -- were too great to overlook. Fitch recently turned in his signed bout agreement to the UFC for a fight with Akihiro Gono at UFC 94. But since he would not agree to the licensing deal, the UFC terminated that bout agreement, along with his UFC deal, Fitch said.

"They basically kicked the door open, guns blazing, pointed it in our face and said, 'Sign this or you're going to pay,'" Fitch said.

In a story published by Yahoo! Sports on Wednesday, UFC president Dana White said he was done working with the AKA.

"We're looking for guys who want to work with us and not against us, and frankly I'm just so [expletive] sick of this [expletive] it's not even funny," White said. "Affliction is still out there trying to build its company. Let [Fitch] go work with them. Let him see what he thinks of those [expletives]. [Expletive] him. These guys aren't partners with us. [Expletive] them. All of them, every last [expletive] one of them."

White further explained to USA Today's Sergio Non that the problem isn't with Fitch, or any individual fighter, but with the AKA management itself.

"They knew exactly where this was going, and now they want to run around and cry and say, 'Oh, these guys are bullying us,' or whatever their claim is out there. ... Those idiots know exactly what happened and exactly why we're in this position right now," White said, as quoted by Non.

White added that one AKA fighter -- Mike Swick -- personally contacted him to pledge allegiance to the UFC in light of the dispute with AKA.

"Any of the fighters can come and talk to me one-on-one. ... Mike Swick called me 10 minutes after it happened and said, 'I'm with you.' "

CBSSports.com has requested to speak with White numerous times within the past two months, but has received no response from UFC officials.

Fitch was on an eight-fight win streak in the UFC leading up to his five-round decision loss to Georges St. Pierre in a welterweight title fight at UFC 87 on Aug. 9. The streak was a UFC record.

Now, one of the UFC's recent success stories finds himself looking for work.

"I never wanted anything more than to fight in the UFC and be a UFC champ," Fitch said on Hardcore Sports Radio. "I put a lot of blood and guts and sweat and tears into this. This is my reward, I guess."
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com