Cain Velasquez

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Cain Velasquez
Cain Velasquez.jpg
Born Cain Ramirez Velasquez
(1982-07-28) July 28, 1982 (age 31)
Salinas, California, United States
Nationality American
Height 6 ft 1 in (185 cm)[1]
Weight 241 lb (109 kg; 17 st 3 lb)
Division Heavyweight
Reach 77 in (196 cm)
Fighting out of San Jose, California, United States
Team American Kickboxing Academy
Trainer Muay Thai: Javier Mendez
Strength: Joe Grosso
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: Leandro Vieira
Boxing: Arturo Mata
Wrestling: Daniel Cormier
Rank Black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Wrestling NCAA Division I Wrestling
Years active 2006–present
Mixed martial arts record
Total 14
Wins 13
By knockout 11
By decision 2
Losses 1
By knockout 1
University Arizona State University
Spouse Michelle Borquez Velasquez
Children Coral
Notable school(s) Kofa High School
Website Official website
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog
last updated on: July 21, 2013

Cain Ramirez Velasquez[2] (born July 28, 1982) is an American mixed martial artist fighting in the Ultimate Fighting Championship where he is the 2-time UFC Heavyweight Champion. As of February 17, 2014, he is #3 in official UFC pound-for-pound rankings[3] and is ranked the #1 heavyweight in the world by Sherdog.[4]

Early life[edit]

Cain Velasquez was born on July 28, 1982 in Salinas, California to Efrain and Isabel Velasquez. Efrain, who immigrated to the US illegally from Mexico and whose story inspires his son,[5] met and married American-born Isabel, which allowed him to attain US citizenship.[6] Velasquez has two siblings, Efrain, Jr., and Adela. He was raised in Yuma, Arizona.[7] He graduated from Kofa High School, where he compiled a record of 110–10 in four years of wrestling, including winning the 5A Arizona Wrestling Championship twice. Velasquez also played football for three years. As a senior, he served as captain of both his wrestling and football teams. As a football player, he played linebacker.[7]

After high school, he attended Iowa Central Community College, wrestling for one season (2001–02) and winning the NJCAA National Championship in the heavyweight (285 lb limit) division.[8] Afterwards, Velasquez transferred to Arizona State University. He wrestled for the Sun Devils for three seasons and compiled a record of 86–17, placing 5th in the country in 2005, and 4th in 2006. While at ASU, Velasquez also wrestled alongside future UFC fighters Ryan Bader and C.B. Dollaway.[9]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Cain began his mixed martial arts career right after college, joining American Kickboxing Academy. Velasquez is a brown belt in Guerrilla Jiu-Jitsu under Dave Camarillo,[10] a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Leandro Viera, and a NCAA Division I Wrestler.[11]

Early career[edit]

Velasquez made his MMA debut on October 7, 2006 against Jesse Fujarczyk at Strikeforce: Tank vs. Buentello, he won by TKO in the first round. Velasquez faced then undefeated Jeremiah Constant at BodogFight: St. Petersburg, he won via TKO in the first round at the 4 minute mark.[12]

Velasquez made his UFC debut against Brad Morris at UFC 83 and won by TKO in the first round.

In his next fight, Velasquez defeated Jake O'Brien at UFC Fight Night 14 via TKO in round one.[13]

Velasquez then faced Denis Stojnić at UFC Fight Night 17 and the fight was stopped in round two with Velasquez earning the victory by TKO. Velasquez earned Knockout of the Night honors for his performance.[14]

Velasquez's next fight was at UFC 99 against former kickboxer and heavyweight contender Cheick Kongo. Velasquez was once again dominant, landing 251 strikes and winning the bout by unanimous decision (30–27 on all cards).[15]

His next opponent was expected to be Shane Carwin[16] with the winner likely challenging for the UFC Heavyweight Championship held by Brock Lesnar. However, that bout was scrapped[17] and Velasquez was instead told he would be fighting UFC newcomer Ben Rothwell at UFC 104.[18][19] He defeated Rothwell by second round TKO.[20]

Velasquez faced former Pride Heavyweight Champion and former Interim UFC Heavyweight Champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira on February 20, 2010 at UFC 110.[21] Going into the fight, some commentators predicted that Nogueira would take the victory due to a supposed lack of striking power for Velasquez.[22] They were proven wrong when Velasquez defeated Nogueira via first round KO, earning Knockout of the Night honors.[22]

UFC Heavyweight Champion[edit]

With his victory over Nogueira, Velasquez earned a UFC Heavyweight Championship fight with then-champ Brock Lesnar. UFC President Dana White announced via SportsNation that the UFC would be bringing back UFC Primetime to promote Lesnar vs. Velasquez.[23] Velasquez defeated Lesnar via TKO in the first round, earning Knockout of the Night honors.

Velasquez suffered a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder during his fight with Lesnar and was expected to be sidelined for at least six to eight months.[24] Surgery on the shoulder was successful and Velasquez planned to return as early as Fall 2011.[25]

Velasquez was expected to make his first title defense against Junior dos Santos, with a target date of November 19, 2011 at UFC 139,[26] but the fight was later moved to November 12, 2011 to headline the first UFC on Fox 1 event.[27]

Velasquez suffered his first loss, via KO (punches), at 1 minute and 4 seconds of the first round at the hands of then title contender, Junior dos Santos. While not public information at the time, it was later revealed that Dos Santos already had a minor knee injury (a torn meniscus), and took an injection of cortisone into the knee before the fight, followed by information revealing that Velasquez had re-injured his rotator cuff approximately a week before the fight. Junior dos Santos would undergo knee surgery following the fight.[28]

Post title loss; Regaining the title[edit]

Velasquez was originally set to fight Frank Mir on May 26, 2012 at UFC 146.[29] However, Mir was moved up to face Junior dos Santos after Alistair Overeem was suspended for elevated testosterone levels. Velasquez instead faced Antonio Silva.[30] Velasquez defeated Silva via first round TKO, in a fight that saw Silva bleed profusely from his forehead. After the fight, Dana White strongly hinted that Velasquez would be the next fighter to challenge for the UFC Heavyweight Championship. It is widely thought that the reason White made the decision to have the rematch with Dos Santos at such an unexpected time, was because of the fact that both fighters were injured going into their first fight.[31]

A rematch was expected with Junior dos Santos on September 22, 2012 at UFC 152.[32] However, it was later announced by Dana White that the date for the rematch had been set to December 29 at UFC 155.[33] In the rematch, Velasquez defeated Dos Santos in a dominating performance[34] via a unanimous decision (50-45, 50-43, 50-44) to regain the UFC heavyweight title.[35][36] Velasquez became the first fighter in UFC history to post triple digits in significant strikes landed and double digits in takedowns landed in a single fight, landing 111 significant strikes and 11 takedowns in his second fight against Dos Santos.[37]

In his first title defense Velasquez defeated Antonio Silva in a rematch on May 25, 2013 at UFC 160.[38] He defeated him via TKO (punches) at 1:21 seconds into the first round.

A rubber match with Junior dos Santos took place at UFC 166 on October 19 in Houston, Texas.[39] Velasquez defended his title for a second time again defeating dos Santos in a mostly one-sided affair ending in TKO at 3:09 of the fifth round.

Fighting style[edit]

Velasquez utilizes powerful and extremely swift punching combinations. He typically starts with a jab, follows up with a hard straight right, and then adds hooks and uppercuts as the fight progresses.[40] He is strong in the clinch, where he throws long combinations that typically end in a takedown.[40]

If Velasquez knocks his opponent to the ground during a fight, he often uses grappling skills to maintain a dominant position while he continues to strike from above.[40] He does not usually attempt submissions. All of his wins have either come by striking from punches, or by decision.[41]

Velasquez has also been praised consistently for his cardiovascular training; he has tremendous endurance that allows him to continue to fight aggressively after his opponents have become exhausted.[40] Velasquez's strong 'cardio' also allows him to throw more strikes. As of July 2013, he was ranked Number 1 for the most 'Strikes Landed per Minute' in the UFC.[42]

Personal life[edit]

Velasquez speaks English and Spanish. He has been a guest star on the Spanish-language television networks Telemundo and Univision.[43] In addition to his Spanish-language TV appearances, he was also a featured guest on the TBS late night TV show, Lopez Tonight, starring George Lopez.[44]

Velasquez is proud of his Mexican-American heritage, and has a prominent 'Brown Pride' tattoo on his upper chest.

Velasquez and his wife, Michelle,[45] had a daughter on May 6, 2009. The couple married on May 28, 2011.[46][47]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 13–1 Junior dos Santos TKO (punches) UFC 166 October 19, 2013 5 3:09 Houston, United States Defended UFC Heavyweight Championship;
Win 12–1 Antonio Silva TKO (punches) UFC 160 May 25, 2013 1 1:21 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Defended UFC Heavyweight Championship.
Win 11–1 Junior dos Santos Decision (unanimous) UFC 155 December 30, 2012 5 5:00 Las Vegas, United States Won UFC Heavyweight Championship;
Win 10–1 Antonio Silva TKO (punches) UFC 146 May 26, 2012 1 3:36 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Loss 9–1 Junior dos Santos KO (punches) UFC on Fox: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos November 12, 2011 1 1:04 Anaheim, California, United States Lost UFC Heavyweight Championship.
Win 9–0 Brock Lesnar TKO (punches) UFC 121 October 23, 2010 1 4:12 Anaheim, California, United States Won UFC Heavyweight Championship; Knockout of the Night.
Win 8–0 Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira KO (punches) UFC 110 February 21, 2010 1 2:20 Sydney, Australia UFC Heavyweight title eliminator; Knockout of the Night.
Win 7–0 Ben Rothwell TKO (punches) UFC 104 October 24, 2009 2 0:58 Cologne, United States Los Angeles
Win 6–0 Cheick Kongo Decision (unanimous) UFC 99 June 13, 2009 3 5:00 Cologne, Germany
Win 5–0 Denis Stojnić TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Lauzon vs. Stephens February 7, 2009 2 2:34 Tampa, Florida, United States Knockout of the Night.
Win 4–0 Jake O'Brien TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Silva vs Irvin July 19, 2008 1 2:02 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 3–0 Brad Morris TKO (punches) UFC 83 April 19, 2008 1 2:10 Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Win 2–0 Jeremiah Constant TKO (punches) BodogFight: St. Petersburg December 16, 2006 1 4:00 St. Petersburg, Russia
Win 1–0 Jesse Fujarczyk TKO (punches) Strikeforce: Tank vs. Buentello October 7, 2006 1 1:58 Fresno, California, United States

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Cain Velasquez". ufc.com. Ultimate Fighting Championship. Retrieved 15 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "Player Bio: Cain Velasquez". TheSunDevils.com. Archived from the original on 2013-09-25. 
  3. ^ UFC Fighter Rankings
  4. ^ "Sherdog's Official Mixed Martial Arts Rankings". sherdog.com. January 5, 2014. 
  5. ^ Porcayo, Omar (2011-11-09). "Mexican-American UFC Champion Inspired By Immigrant Father". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2012-12-30. 
  6. ^ "Cain Velasquez: Like Father, Like Son". LOWKICK.com. 2010-10-03. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  7. ^ a b "Cain Velasquez Player Bio". THESUNDEVILS.CSTV.com. 2010-07-06. Retrieved 2010-07-06. 
  8. ^ http://www.njcaa.org/sports_nationalchampionship.cfm?sid=40&divid=0&slid=22&seasonselect=123
  9. ^ "Cain Velasquez". Wrestling Hall of Fame. 2010-10-03. Archived from the original on 2010-07-06. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  10. ^ Richardson, Andrew (23 May 2013). "UFC 160 complete fighter breakdown, Cain Velasquez edition". MMAMania.com. Retrieved 4 October 2013. 
  11. ^ Fontanez, Erik. "Video: UFC champ Cain Velasquez gets his BJJ black belt". GracieMag.com. Retrieved 4 October 2013. 
  12. ^ "Bodog Fight – Clash of the Nations". 
  13. ^ "Cain Velasquez vs. Jake O'Brien". SPIKE.com. 2008-07-19. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  14. ^ "UFC Fight Night 17: As expected Cain Velasquez beats Denis Stojnic". MMACRUNCH.com. 2009-02-08. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  15. ^ "Cheick Kongo got hit in the head 251 times by Cain Velasquez at UFC 99". URDIRT.com. 2009-06-16. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  16. ^ Savage, Greg (2009-07-01). "Carwin-Velazquez Likely for UFC 104". Sherdog.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02. 
  17. ^ Helwani, Ariel (2009-08-20). "Shane Carwin vs. Cain Velasquez Off; Carwin to Challenge Lesnar for UFC Title". MMAFighting.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02. 
  18. ^ McNeil, Franklin (2009-10-22). "Rothwell fight a blessing for Velasquez". ESPN.Go.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02. 
  19. ^ Morgan, John (2009-08-20). "Cain Velasquez and Ben Rothwell set for heavyweight contest at UFC 104 in Los Angeles". MMAJunkie.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02. 
  20. ^ Okamoto, Brett (2009-10-25). "Cain Velasquez impressive in win, may still have to wait for title shot". LasVegasSun.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02. 
  21. ^ Knapp, Brian (2010-02-20). "Velasquez Stops Nogueira at UFC 110". Sherdog.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02. 
  22. ^ a b "UFC 110 main card recap: Velasquez stuns Nogueira in first, Silva returns to win column". MMAJUNKIE.com. 2010-02-21. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  23. ^ "Brock Lesnar, Cain Velasquez UFC Primtime". MMAFighting.com. 2010-08-26. 
  24. ^ "Trainer: UFC champ Velasquez out a minimum of 6–8 months with torn rotator cuff". MMAJunkie.com. 2010-12-29. 
  25. ^ "Injured UFC champ Cain Velasquez already back in the gym, return date TBD". MMAJunkie.com. 2011-01-17. 
  26. ^ "UFC flexes strong fall schedule with Velasquez defense". latimes.com.com. 2011-06-16. 
  27. ^ "Cain Velasquez vs. Junior Dos Santos headlines UFC's debut on FOX". mmajunkie.com. September 2, 2011. Retrieved September 2, 2011. 
  28. ^ Morgan, John; Marrocco, Steven (2011-11-13). "New UFC champ Junior Dos Santos fought with torn meniscus at UFC on FOX". MMAJunkie.com. Retrieved 2012-03-29. 
  29. ^ "Cain Velasquez vs. Frank Mir title-eliminator added to UFC 146". mmajunkie.com. March 7, 2012. Retrieved March 7, 2012. 
  30. ^ "UFC 146: Cain Velasquez vs Antonio Silva booked for May 26 in Las Vegas". mmamania.com. April 22, 2012. Retrieved April 22, 2012. 
  31. ^ "With UFC 146 wins, Junior Dos Santos vs. Cain Velasquez II on tap". mmajunkie.com. May 27, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2012. 
  32. ^ "Junior Dos Santos vs. Cain Velasquez II targeted for UFC 152 headliner". mmajunkie.com. June 9, 2012. 
  33. ^ "Dos Santos-Velasquez by the numbers". espn.go.com. Dec 26, 2012. 
  34. ^ Knapp, Brian (29 December 2012). "Cain Velasquez Bludgeons Junior dos Santos, Reclaims Heavyweight Crown at UFC 155". Sherdog. Retrieved 30 December 2012. 
  35. ^ "Cain Velasquez regains title". espn.go.com. Dec 30, 2012. 
  36. ^ Martin, Todd (29 December 2012). "UFC 155: Cain Velasquez dominates Junior Dos Santos to regain title". LATimes.com. Retrieved 31 December 2012. 
  37. ^ "@cainmma Records First Triple-Double in UFC History". FightMetric.com. Retrieved 30 December 2012. 
  38. ^ Matt Erickson (2013-02-12). "Velasquez-Silva 2, Dos Santos-Overeem booked for UFC 160 in May". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2013-02-12. 
  39. ^ Dann Stupp and Matt Erickson (2013-06-13). "Champ Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos III likely at UFC 166 in Houston". MMAjunkie.com. Retrieved 2013-06-13. 
  40. ^ a b c d Richardson, Andrew (2012-12-24). "UFC 155 complete fighter breakdown, Cain Velasquez edition". MMAmania.com. Retrieved 2012-12-30. 
  41. ^ "Cain Velasquez - FightWiki". Mmalinker.com. Retrieved 2012-12-30. 
  42. ^ "Strikes Landed per Minute (SLpM) record". fightmetric.com. Retrieved July 29, 2013. 
  43. ^ "Cain Velasquez Brings a Little Bit of Bad-Ass to Latin Grammy Awards, Rothwell to Face Cro Cop in Australia?". CAGEPOTATO.com. 2009-11-05. Retrieved 2010-10-03. 
  44. ^ "Cain Velasquez Interviewed on Lopez Tonight". Mexican-American.org. 2010-10-25. Retrieved 2011-03-13. [dead link]
  45. ^ December 28, 2012. "VIDEO: Michelle Borquez Velasquez- MMA Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez' Wife (pics, bio, Wiki)". FabWags.com. Retrieved 2012-12-30. 
  46. ^ "Cain Velasquez got married". Fightlinker.com. 2011-05-31. Retrieved 2011-05-31. 
  47. ^ "Raising Cain: An MMAmania.com interview exclusive with Cain Velasquez". MMAMANIA.com. 2009-05-06. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  48. ^ "MMAjunkie.com reader poll: Who is the 2010 Fighter of the Year?". MMAjunkie.com. 8 January 2011. Retrieved 27 May 2012. 
  49. ^ Breen, Jordan (5 January 2013). "Sherdog.com’s 2012 All-Violence Team". Sherdog.com. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  50. ^ Breen, Jordan (12 January 2014). "Sherdog.com’s 2013 All-Violence Team". Sherdog.com. Retrieved 12 January 2014. 
  51. ^ Meltzer, Dave (January 27, 2014). "Jan 27 2014 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: 2013 Annual awards issue, best in the world in numerous categories, plus all the news in pro-wrestling and MMA over the past week and more". Wrestling Observer Newsletter (Campbell, California): 1–37. ISSN 1083-9593. 
  52. ^ a b Cain Velasquez. The National Wrestling Hall of Fame Museum

External links[edit]

Achievements
Preceded by
Brock Lesnar
15th UFC Heavyweight Champion
October 23, 2010 – November 12, 2011
Succeeded by
Junior dos Santos
Preceded by
Junior dos Santos
17th UFC Heavyweight Champion
December 29, 2012 – Present
Current holder