PHOTO | Former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez is back in training

Cain Velasquez

It has been a long, long time since we’ve seen former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez in the cage. To be more precise, it’s been since he mauled Travis Browne to a first-round TKO in early July of 2016.

The reason for Velasquez’s prolonged absence from the cage is his continued struggle with injury. After being forced out of a planned December 2016 rematch with former champion Fabricio Werdum, Velasquez underwent surgery, and has not been heard from much since.

From the looks of it, however, Velasquez is back in the gym. On Monday afternoon, UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, who has long been one of Velasquez’s chief training partners, posted to Instagram explaining how good it is to have Velasquez back in his training camp. See Cormier’s post below.

“Getting prepared for something is amazing, but anytime [Cain Velasquez] is in the training room you know training goes to another level,” Cormier said in his post. “So good to have this dude back, he’s played such a huge part in my journey it’s hard when he’s gone. I know I’m gonna be ready for Volkan [Oezdemir]. Let’s go!”

While this is far from confirmation of an imminent Cain Velasquez comeback, it does seem to bode well. With a little luck, the former champion will return to the battlefield just as Francis Ngannou and Stipe Miocic fight for heavyweight gold this January 20.

This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 11/12/2017.