In a little more than a week Cain Velasquez will have an opportunity to numb the sting of suffering his first career defeat when he meets Antonio Silva in co-headlining action at UFC 146. Velasquez started his professional career out like few have, racking up nine straight wins and the UFC title. However, he suffered a 64-second knockout loss in his last outing and saw his belt go to Junior dos Santos.
If he can beat Silva, Velasquez will likely earn another shot at procuring the divisional championship, and based on some recent statements from the American Kickboxing Academy product it seems clear he’s dead set on doing so.
“It’s time to right some wrongs,” wrote Velasquez in a FoxSports blog promoting the May 26 match-up with Silva. “No matter who wins the main event on May 26, I’ll be watching intently, keen to challenge him at some point in 2012. Once I get Silva out of the way, I only have eyes for that title belt. I need it back in my life.”
Of course, getting by “Bigfoot” is easier said than done, and as far as Velasquez is concerned he’s an equally stiff test as the man he was originally set to scrap with at the event – Frank Mir.
“I really don’t see any kind of drop down in challenge or threat. Silva is every bit as dangerous as Mir would have been, albeit in different ways,” wrote Velasquez. “Mir is obviously well known for his submission game, whereas Silva is the sort of guy who is solid everywhere. He isn’t great at any one thing, but is good at everything. He can cause problems in the stand-up and also can put guys in trouble on the ground. You can’t take him lightly no matter where the fight may go.”
Silva holds an overall record of 16-3 in comparison to Velasquez’s 9-1 mark. Fourteen of his wins have involved a finishing performance including eleven TKOs.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC
MMATraining Take: It’s nice when fighters are as humble and respectful as Velasquez. He hasn’t once made an excuse for his loss to Dos Santos, giving him full credit whenever asked about it, and he understands Silva can’t be overlooked and is as much of a beast as Mir is.