“Imagine if I’m the only guy who submitted Fedor, ‘Minotauro’ and Velasquez?” UFC heavyweight fighter Fabricio Werdum asked after learning he would be the next to challenge Cain Velasquez’s heavyweight championship. “Then I would retire and work only as a commentator.”
By Christopher Murphy @MurphMMA
Not long after Cain Velasquez successfully defended his heavyweight title from Junior Dos Santos in the pair’s third fight against one another at UFC 166, the UFC announced that Fabricio Werdum would be the next man to face Velasquez.
At the press conference following UFC 166, UFC President Dana White said that Werdum makes the most sense as an opponent for Velasquez, and that the challenger’s skills make for an intriguing fight.
“His whole game has improved,” White said of Werdum. “The guy’s a big, strong, durable guy, and his jiu jitsu; he’s going to want to go to the ground, which makes this fight very interesting.”
Indeed, Werdum’s extensive experience in Brazilian jiu jitsu gives him a sizeable advantage on the ground, though Velasquez has been able to defeat jiu jitsu specialists in the past. Nevertheless, Werdum is confident in his abilities.
“If we go to the ground and I need to use my guard,” Werdum told Sherdog.com after UFC 166, “I don’t foresee any problems. I see when fighters lack confidence in the guard and want to stand up fast, giving their back to the opponent. The technical get-up is one of the first things we learn in jiu jitsu, and we have to do it well in MMA. This is important. If there’s no way to do it, use the guard, sweep, try a submission.”
As for a game plan, while most people expect Werdum to look to get the fight on the ground, he plans to take some time first to study Velasquez game first and foremost.
“The fight will happen in February or March, and I’ll study his game hard. I’ll train a lot. I saw an interview with him where he said he respects me a lot, that I’m a great champion, and I say the same about him. We’ll put on a great show.”
Looking ahead to fight night, Werdum did have one prediction to offer: if he submits Velasquez, it will be his final fight.
“I can visualize the scene. Sure, there will be a lot of training before, but imagine if I’m the only guy who submitted Fedor, ‘Minotauro’ and Velasquez? Then I would retire and work only as a commentator.”
Be sure to stay tuned to BJPenn.com for more updates on the title fight between UFC heavyweight champion, Cain Velasquez, and challenger, Fabricio Werdum.Tags: Cain Velasquez, Dana White, Fabricio Werdum, Junior Dos Santos, junior dos santos vs cain velasquez, mma, MMA NEWS, ufc, UFC 166, ufc news, velasquez vs. werdum