UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez may be nursing an injury but that has not stopped fight fans from wondering if there is anyone who can beat him. I recently posited this question to a Facebook group one late night (I never sleep) and I was surprised at the answers I received.
The responses fell into two basic groups. One group was convinced that the UFC heavyweight division is weak and Cain Velasquez is not that great. The other group is convinced that Travis Browne is the only man on the planet that can take own Velasquez.
Let’s look at these two premises separately.
The Heavyweight Division Is Weak
This hypothesis has some merit. Outside of the top 5 contenders the division does seem to be lacking. The top five spots consist of Junior Dos Santos, Fabricio Werdum, Travis Browne, Antonio Silva and Josh Barnett. In his last five fights Velasquez has only fought Dos Santos and Silva. This was a big deal with the Facebook community.
After these top 5 lie Alistair Overeem and Stipe Miocic. These two fighters are questionable at best. After them the list really gets thin. Mark Hunt, Roy Nelson and Frank Mir round out the top ten in the division. It is doubtful that any of these fighters will get a title shot any time soon.
Is the division weak or is Cain Velasquez just so much better than everyone else?
The consensus seems to be that Travis Browne is the only fighter who can beat Cain Velasquez. Browne is riding a three fight win streak with first round knockouts of Gabriel Gonzaga, Overeem and Barnett. He is scheduled to fight Werdum at UFC On FOX 11 April 19. Conventional wisdom says that the winner of that fight will face Velasquez for the title.
Browne has some heavy hands and can knockout his opponents with one punch. But so can Velasquez. Add an incredible cardio to that and it is easy to see that if Cain can survive an early onslaught from Browne he can wear him down and win the fight in the later rounds.
If Travis Browne can get past Werdum (which is no easy task) his “reward” will be facing one of the most dangerous men on the planet in Cain Velasquez. In my opinion Velasquez is just too good. While I am a fan of Browne I just don’t see any way he can beat the champ. Without a doubt it will be a great fight but I don’t see the belt changing hands.
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