Tag Archives: Cain Velasquez

UFC 121: Cain Velasquez is the new heavyweight champion of the UFC after beating Brock Lesnar to a bloody pulp!


Cain Velasquez - Gladiador Mejor - El Matador

Gladiador Increíble – El Matador –  and “Atleta Nuevo”: Cain Velasquez: The new UFC heavyweight champion after pulverizing Brock Lesnar at UFC 121.

He came in like a collegiate athlete, Cain Velasquez that is, against a mountain of corn-fed manhood – Brock Lesnar – and outboxed and out-wrestled the self-proclaimed “meanest son of a bitch” before the referee stopped the UFC 121 headliner towards the end of the first round. It was like an eerie repeat of UFC 116 with Cain playing the part of Carwin.  What was definitively different was the outcome at 4.12″ of the first round. Cain did not gas. He was unrelenting in his pin-point pummeling  and relentless take-downs of Lesnar in answer to Lesnar’s first couple of attempts. (Lesnar had charged Velasquez from the opening seconds and taken Cain down to no effect as Cain got up and turned the punching and takedown tables on Brock.)  Before long, Lesnar was running around the octagon like a drunken sailor – the unmistakable effects of heavy hands whose impact had escaped the naked eyed. Cain smelt blood and piled on and felled Lesnar once again with a knee followed by a blow to the left temple reminiscent  of Lesnar vs Couture.

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Cain Velasquez Has A Puncher’s Chance Of Winning UFC 121 against Brock Lesnar


With just over an hour before the punch-up between Brock Lesnar and Shane Carwin in UFC 121, we have made an alternative reassessment of  Cain’s chances on an inspired whim fired by a sense of presentiment.  From a head stand-point it feels like a  long shot but it is very possible: Cain has a puncher’s chance of winning this fight. It would be all in the timing; a stunner of a blow (don’t taze me bro!) followed by well placed blows in the clinch or the ground for the finishing coup de grace.

It’s a long shot, but its possible – just like Mir’s leg lock against Lesnar was possible in UFC 81.

Cain Velasquez - Gladiador Mejor - El Matador

Gladiador Mejor - El Matador - Cain Velasquez. Could UFC 121 turn into a UFC 81 redux?

A David vs Goliath Match-up: Cain Velasquez is entering  UFC 121 with more weight on his shoulders than he should  rightfully be bearing: what he describes as  the hope of millions of Latino fans for a  Mexican heavyweight champion.  Brock Lesnar, the self-acclaimed “meanest son of a bitch”  stands alone against his doubters.  That weight – the weight on Cain Velasquez’s shoulders can make or break fighter. Tonight is gonna show us what it will do to Cain vs a man  who thinks he has a thing or two to prove a world he has already flipped off. Continue reading

UFC 116: Brock Lesnar “Mirs” Shane Carwin and submits him via a freakish arm triangle choke!


“Mir” being used as a verb in this case which means taking
down, mounting and utterly dominating (Cyberaxis)

The technical pyrotechnics were missing as we had expected but the fight very much lived to its spectacle billing for the 7:19 minutes the fighters traded leather. At  about 2 minutes  of the second round – Brock Lesnar, who had come within seconds of being “counted out” after a merciless pounding by Carwin  – took Carwin down and then mounted him the way he did Frank Mir in UFC 100. After manhandling him a little he slipped an arm triangle choke on Carwin’s supine form and started to choke him. THIS was manly business –  virtual killing in mundane time – boys need not apply. Fans and even Carwin himself didn’t realize the gravity of what was happening until the cinch tightened and an already spastic Carwin was struggling for dear breath. Reality check time. Carwin tapped out at 2:19 minutes of the second round.

Carwin Pummels Lesnar - Eric Jamison - AP

Shane Carwin ascendantly overpowering in round one pummels Brock Lesnar into a cowering mess (priceless montage) before the reversal of fortune in round two where Lesnar turns the tables on the Carwin and chokes him into a stunning  submission. File this one under virtual upset! The rematch is gonna be MONSTROUS – and Lesnar WILL NOT take any chances this time. (Photo – Eric Jamison – Associated Press)

MMA fans the world over erupted in belief and disbelief. Those on pacemakers were in clear danger of succumbing to what Terence McKenna called  “death by astonishment.”

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Cain Velasquez and Postcards from UFC 110


UFC 110 in Australia will be remembered as a low-key event that nevertheless  sent back huge postcards about Cain Velasquez and the future of the UFC heavyweight division.  Set in the land down under, this is an even that  could have as well been billed as “Return of the Vets: Old Guns versus Young ‘Uns.”  Two of them (Wanderlei Silva and Mirko Cro Cop) won and the last two (Antonio Nogueira and Keith Jardine) lost for an even split with the young ‘uns.

People couldn’t help but cheer for Wanderlei Silva, the grand-daddy of old Pride championships who has given MMA his all, including his face and nose cartilage. His win over Michael Bisping was a like a shot in the arm for the MMA hard-core. You had to be heartless to not cheer for this take-no-prisoners warrior, especially against a colicky prick like Michael Bisping. Wanderlei’s almost knock-out flurry at the end of the last round was one of the high points of the night.

Postcard #1:  But the most notable postcard was the emergence of Cain Velasquez as a certifiably serious challenger to the heavyweight throne of the UFC. The kid earned his stripes last night and we duly revise our assessment of him from not being ready for primetime to someone who has as  a good chance as any, absent the buzz-saw named Brock Lesnar, of capturing the heavyweight title. What made us change our assessment, beyond the knockout of Antonio Nogueira at 2:20 of the first round, was his willingness to stand and trade serious punches. The stand-up game was impressive from the crisp accurate punches (accuracy percentage 64% – the second best in the UFC) to the crisp, agile kicks with explosive rotation. No, this was not a ground and pound scraper, but a fully-formed fighter materializing before our very eyes. Nuff respect. Nuff respect.

El Matador Cain Velasquez

“El Matador” Cain Velasquez – The coming of Latin pride to UFC-MMA in the form of a take-no-prisoners gladiator. At UFC 110, the 27 year old Velasquez sent notice to the entire world.

Does the UFC need a heavyweight champion like Cain Velasquez? As celebrated MILF and former vice-presidential candidate, Sarah Palin would say, “You betcha!” Reason? There is nothing negative about what this young man represents, from his overt ethnic pride, to his focus, work-ethic and low-key persona which comes across as humility. The demographic he stands to bring into UFC fandom, is one of the fastest if not the fastest-growing demographic in the United States. And the group has none of that highfalutin’ prejudice against the pugilistic of the arts. Are you reading this Mr. Dana White sir?

Cain’s win last night may have put him slightly ahead of Shane Carwin by virtue of  its improved stand-up game backed by a proven ground-and-pound game. The only thing Cain has to fear is Shane’s power.  Frank Mir has to pick a number behind Shane and Cain at this point. Beating Cheick Kongo means zip.  Zero.  Nada.

Drive and focus wise, Velasquez is on a par with Lesnar with a slight edge going to Velasquez because of Lesnar’s overweening confidence. Be that as it may, beating a healthy Lesnar – if at all, won’t be a walk in the park. The limiting factors for Velasquez would be size and strength. There is a very good reason Frank Mir has bulked up in preparation for a possible rematch with The Brock. Wiry grapplers just don’t cut it with Brock. He is just “too much man” for the average heavyweight stiff. Ask Randy Couture if ya doubt our contention. So coming in at a willowy 243lbs versus 265 plus pounds won’t be enough for Velasquez. Either he bulks up a la Frank Mir with corresponding strength gains or Lesnar comes down to Velasquez’s actual weight for a really fair match. But you know that won’t happen.  Regulations don’t call for it; end of  story.

Cyberaxis Prediction: So watch Cain Velasquez put on the pounds, slowly but surely.  There are no two ways about this if he wants to be counted as a credible contender against Brock Lesnar. Remember you heard it here first.

Postcard #2: UFC has gone international with no sign of the interest or attendance numbers waning.  Reports IFight365 from its website:

UFC President Dana White delivered the good news with the event drawing 17,831 people for a gate that is estimated at $2.5 million. That number moves the UFC 110 event ahead of the UFC 105 event held in Manchester, England last November that drew 16,693 fans. In addition to breaking the UFC’s record, White added that the event set an Acer Arena record for the highest-grossing sporting event in the arena’s history, as well as selling the most merchandise ever for any event, beating an Iron Maiden concert held at the venue. (IFight365 Website)

Rumblings of making MMA an Olympic are already being made even though Dana White is studiedly feigning disinterest or nonchalance.

Postcard #3: It is tough to watch the old-timers being methodically pulverized by the young ‘uns as they grab for that last bit of glory or  security – financial or otherwise. At the young age of 33 – young by any other standard that is – Wanderlei is already a grand-daddy of the sport. Now think of retiring at 33 and do the math. That is a good 40 years that one has to figure out how what to do with one’s time, assuming that one doesn’t have anything to worry about money. The message (among other things)? Fighters and the UFC have to figure out how secure prime fighters’ futures one way or the other. MMA fighting, like football and other sports, offers a woefully short career. An emerging body like UFC has to figure out how to  do things right by its fighters. The help that Brock Lesnar needed during his traumatic illness, is just the tip of the iceberg.

Poscard #4: When you hold other things constant, youth is an ascendant aspect in this sport. Nothing new here. The dominating performances by Cain Velasquez vs Antonio Nogueira and Ryan Bader vs Keith Jardine said it all. Watch for the changing of the guard at your nearest UFC event. The corn-fed young ‘uns are coming up bigger, stronger and physically more precocious than preceding generation; as if you didn’t already know that. If not, visit your local gym.

copyright© 2010 cyberaxis.wordpress.com

The unrealised promise of Cheick Kongo


UFC 99 put on full display why Cheick Kongo may not make it to the big leagues in UFC. While he is a fearsome Muay Thai striker who clearly distinguished himself against Mirko Cro Crop, his checkered career has suffered from the two-steps-forward-one-step-back syndrome and a one dimensional stand up style that is ill-equipped to deal with the multi-faceted octagon strategy of the best UFC fighters of today. UFC 99 clearly proved it. He was outwitted and out-manhandled by a similarly constituted fighter whom he knocked down twice in that fight.   We just hope that in time Kongo will not exit the way of another of his Parisian compadres, Professor X,  Xavier Foupa-Pokam. Such an exit would just be too sad for a man who came in with an impressive highlight tape and and the high hopes of an expat.

Cheick Kongo:A UFC dream deferred.

Cheick Kongo: An imposing physique but lackluster career. Is this a case of A UFC dream deferred?

See the full UFC 99 fight video here.

The weak conditioning, poor cardio and an inability to think on his feet. It is almost infuriating to watch. One can imagine how hard it is for the trainers in his corner. Against Cain Velasquez (26), Cheick Kongo (34) looked old and spent, the few hard strikes he rocked Velasquez with notwithstanding. The picture of a bloodied, winded Kongo was sadly emblematic of fighter who may not make it up the headliner marquees in UFC. What a waste  for a fighter who came into UFC with tons of great publicity.  Skill may be hard to muster, but there is really no excuse for poor conditioning or weak-ass cardio for a guy with his physical endowments. Being 34 is not good enough of an excuse. (Randy Couture who is all of 46 took that excuse away.)

The same goes for some of the strategic mistakes Kongo makes in the ring. His fight against Velasquez is a classic case (The repeated take-downs by Velasquez, for example, did little to teach Kongo to stay out of clinches with the which led to further take-downs). His fight against Heath Herring was another. Take the first few seconds after the first bell of  UFC 82 against Heath Herring. Kongo’s decision to just stand there in his corner like poser on a Paris  sidewalk as Heath Herring barreled towards him and rocked him, was beyond comprehension! If you can find the video somewhere, check it out and tell us what planet Cheick Kongo was on in those few seconds following the opening “bell”.

Cain Velasquez: Not yet ready for prime-time too …. or Brock Lesnar (Paging the Last Emperor): What this fight also reveals is that Cain Velasquez may not yet be ready for heavyweight prime time. The boiler room whispers about Velasquez vs Lesnar are just silly.  The boy is not even close. At this point in his career he is just is another schoolyard ground and pound scrapper who is not yet ready to fight with the beast that Lesnar is. He just does not have enough  stand-up game and would be killed by Lesnar on the ground. His 240lbs at 6’1″ is about the same as Frank Mir’s, sans the octagonal seasoning. He would not stand a chance against Lesnar’s 265lbs of corn-fed mania. The same applies to Parisian, Cheick Kongo.

copyright© 2009 cyberaxis.wordpress.com

Appendix:

UFC 107: A Better Card Out of the Blue (Cyberaxis)