Ladies and Gentlemen, make no mistake about it; this fight will live up to its billing. In one corner you’ve got the undefeated Mexican, Cain Velasquez, who is coming off a huge victory over Antonio Rodrigo Nogueria. That fight ended in the first round via a KO (punches) at just 2:20 marking only the 2nd time that Nogueria had been legitimately knocked out. Doing this, Velasquez answered a lot of the critics who, prior to the fight, had been criticized for not having much power in his striking game. What’s a better way to prove them wrong than to knock out a guy who has only been KOed, legitimately, once? In the other corner you’ve got the “Next Big Thing”, Brock Lesnar. Lesnar too is coming into this fight on a high after unifying the heavyweight belt through a victory over Shane Carwin. This was the first real test for Lesnar who took A LOT of punishment in the first round and proved to the critics that he can withstand a good amount of damage. For a lot of fans, this was Lesnars first “real” fight. Both guys come into this fight riding highs, which should make for an exciting fight for both avids UFC fans and casual ones.
When I look at this fight, the big thing that stands out for me is the opportunity for a HUGE upset. After all, there is a reason that Velasquez has an undefeated record. The first reason I see this upset happening is the fact that Velasquez has, arguably, the best cardio in the entire division. In the Carwin-Lesnar fight when Shane Carwin was punishing Lesnar, he gassed himself out after just 1 round. This allowed Lesnar to do pretty much whatever he wanted in the second round and what happened afterwards was a result of a lack of cardio. With Velasquez this won’t happen. He’s got the gas tank to go 5 rounds and do what Carwin couldn’t. Another reason I see an upset is because of how technically sound Velasquez’s boxing skills are. Make no mistake about it, he doesn’t have the power of a guy like Carwin, but what he does have is accuracy, speed and technical abilities. The two times when Lesnar got into mini boxing matches (Frank Mir & Randy Couture) he hasn’t looked like the dominant fighter he has been when he is on the ground. With that said, I wouldn’t count out Brock entirely if the fight stays standing. Just look at the guy and you can see he is an intimidating guy. He’s got a tonne of power behind those cannonballs he calls fists and, with one shot, could end the fight. In my mind the one area that will decide this fight is going to be how well Velasquz wrestles. Both guys are former NCAA Division 1 wrestlers. Where the ground game will be decided is how well Cain Velasquez is able to overcome the size of Lesnar. He’s got massive tree trunks for legs and uses them to anchor himself and lay beatdowns on guys (see Frank Mir part 2). It’s seems to me that Velasquez should be going into this fight wanting to keep it standing while Lesnar will try to go to the ground and pound and hope his power and wrestling skills can overcome Velasquez’s wrestling skills.
Lesnar vs Velasquez Betting Odds
The most favourable mma betting odds for this fight are as follows:
I realize that I am in a very small minority when I say this, but I feel that at the end of Saturday night the UFC will have a new heavyweight champion. Velasquez is one of the most well rounded fighters that Lesnar will see and I don’t think Brock’s skills are there yet, especially after his illness. I see Velasquez taking this one on points. However, I wouldn’t rule out a TKO either if he can outbox Lesnar in the early goings and land a couple of big shots.
Top Bet Prediction: Cain Velasquez +130 (Sportsbook.com)
Written by: Allan Etmanski