On December 30th, Cain Velasquez and Fabricio Werdum were set to have a highly anticipated rematch, with a heavyweight title shot against Stipe Miocic on the line.
Leading up to the fight, Velasquez was very open about the fact that he had endured a back injury during training, using CBD Oil to help him get through training camp at 100%. While the former champ was slated to have back surgery just days after the fight, he made it through training camp without issue, and was geared up to fight ‘Vai Calvao’ on December 30th. Unfortunately, the NSAC caught wind of Velasquez’ back problems, and forced him to undergo an extra pre-fight medical screening, which resulted in him being pulled from the card with just one week to go until fight night.
The way Fabricio Werdum sees it, he should receive the heavyweight title shot against Stipe Miocic because Velasquez was unable to fight, much like when Tyron Woodley was given the welterweight title shot when a weight-cutting mishap forced Johny Hendricks out of their #1 contender fight.
He spoke to MMAFighting:
“That would be fair. Cain Velasquez didn’t show up for the title eliminator bout, and he won’t be able to fight in a while, so I’d rather wait and fight for the belt next,” Werdum said. “I’m the No. 1 contender, that’s the logical choice. Cain Velasquez won’t fight for a long time, so it’s fair to make me against Stipe Miocic in 2017.”
When discussing how his rematch with Miocic will go, Werdum predicted:
“Being more patient, I’m sure I’ll submit him. I learned a lot with that lesson. I have what it takes to beat him. I didn’t have enough time to show that in the first fight because I was too anxious, but I’ll beat him next time.”
Werdum and Miocic of course met in the Octagon at UFC 298 back in May, where Miocic picked up a first round KO win to clam the UFC heavyweight championship.