Junior Dos Santos (c) v. Cain Velasquez
|Image via Themmanews|
DJ Mark with a "K": Their first fight was so short that it’s difficult to take away a lot from it. The one thing we learned is that Junior has the power to stop Cain early in the fight, which isn’t all that surprising but is still a very important factor. I thought Cain’s strategy in the first fight was a pretty decent one (he seemed to be focusing on leg kicks to counter the distance of a boxer like Junior) but was also putting himself in a lot of danger. This time around I would think Cain would try a different approach and try to make this a grappling match. Cain’s bread and butter is wrestling and I think using those skills is the safest way for him to get his title back. The problem is that Junior is extremely good at staying off his back. It’ll be interesting to see if Cain is able to get the match on the ground and if he has the skill to keep Junior there. I fear if Cain can’t gain control of this fight by either getting it to the ground or pushing Junior up against the fence it’ll just be a matter of time till Junior can lay his hands on Cain and retain his title. Since I have yet to see anyone be able to use this type of game plan against Junior I’m siding with him. Junior via 2nd round TKO 2:31.
Kid Presentable: First things first, no matter who wins here, these are the top two heavyweights in the world. Even if Cain gets put to sleep a minute into the fight once more, I still wouldn’t hesitate to pick him to smash the rest of the division. That said, I think we’ll see something a little different this time. Cain is a smart and fast evolving fighter. Everyone and their mother knows the big question mark is what if Cain took the fight to the mat? It will be interesting to see Cain’s game plan because you can’t just simply take it to the mat, you have to train how you are going to set up taking your shot. JDS has some of the most successful take down defense in the division and even then he has long trained under the Nogueiras and won’t be helpless if it goes there. I really hope that Cain takes this just to keep this feud going, because if there are any two fighters deserving of more than just a trilogy of fights, it’s these two guys here. Overall though, I can’t really pick Cain until he proves that he can take down and neutralize JDS biggest weapons. Cain so far has proven to be quite hitable in every one of his fights, and Overeem is probably the only other guy in the division that hits this hard. JDS by TKO round 3.
|Image via Bleacherreport|
Lavender Gooms:I think to call Cain the number #1 contender would be an insult to just how good he really is. In the heavyweight division Junior Dos Santos and Cain are 1 and 1A. Both of these fighters are young(ish) and extremely talented. This might be premature, but I think this could be the beginning of the first true rivalry in MMA on the same level as Ali-Frazier. I would not be surprised if the heavyweight title changes hands between the two of them three or four times in the next five years. There is no denying that JDS caught him (very well) in their fight a year ago and dropped him very early in their fight. However I attribute that more to Cain losing his head for a bit and trying to stand with an extremely feared striker and being much more hesitant than he has ever been. This time around I see Cain using the high level wrestling he wasn’t able to use in the first fight. I think Cain wins this time, mainly because you can’t have a good rivalry stating off 0-2 right? Velasquez by TKO in 3rd round.
Picking Dos Santos-Dr. Law, Kid P, DJ Mark
Picking Velasquez- Gooms