Fabricio Werdum vs. Cain Velasquez 2
In a division fraught with huge potential rematches, newly crowned heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum will make his first defense against the man who held the belt for three years, Cain Velasquez. ‘Vai Cavalo’ upset the odds at UFC 188, crushing Velasquez in the third round of their Mexico City slugfest with a submission win.
The Brazilian became the first man to submit the Mexican boss, and the rematch was recently confirmed, albeit without a date or event in mind just yet. Whether you agree with Velasquez’s conditioning playing a role in his performance or not, it’s likely that shouldn’t be a factor next time around. Even if the UFC decides to book the rematch in the same arena, the former champ should have learned a very valuable lesson in his loss, and you’d imagine he’d be well prepared for an early camp if that were the requirement.
Werdum had surprising success in the department that few expected him to, the striking, landed frequently with the jab to bloody up the former champion’s face. In the end it was the Mexican’s main strength that was his undoing, as he fell from a takedown straight in to a tight choke before relinquishing his belt with a tapout.
For Werdum it was a coming of age, and for Velasquez it was a harsh lecture in the field of combat. We’ll know whether he had underestimated ‘Vai Cavalo’ at UFC 188 by how the rematch goes, we’ll also know if Werdum simply has the former champ’s number in the octagon. In terms of predictions, this one is actually pretty tough to call.
Do and Don’t
Fabricio Werdum-Do try and be smart with your striking and conservative with your energy throughout, be prepared for a gruelling five-round war and also to work from your back. Don’t try and replicate your last win, as the champion the most important thing is to take home the belt, don’t try and get in a striking war with ‘CV’ as it could prove to be foolish, even after your last win against him.
Cain Velasquez-Do try and mix your striking style up a little, bring something that Werdum hasn’t seen from you before, do remain confident in the wrestling department, he’ll exploit the fact that you might be hesitant to jump his guard again if he senses it on fight night. Don’t get in open striking exchanges too often, don’t let this guy out of your clinch and off the fence, and most certainly don’t stick that chin to the side of Werdum’s rib cage where he can wrap up another choke during a takedown.
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