If Cain Velasquez wanted to, he could’ve immediately sought UFC president Dana White and demanded his next fight be for the heavyweight championship. But that’s not Velasquez’s style. He’s the kind of guy who speaks softly and carries a big stick, and let’s his fighting do all the talking.
Boy, did his performance Saturday night at UFC 146 speak volumes, as Velasquez was savage in defeating Antonio “Big Foot” Silva by way of technical knockout three minutes and 36 seconds into the first round of the co-main event.
Not surprisingly, Velasquez simply got up and calmly walked away when referee Josh Rosenthal stepped in to stop the fight. Also not surprisingly, Velasquez was modest in assessing his dominant performance over the massive Silva, who made his UFC debut from Strikeforce.
“I feel good,” Velasquez said. “It’s definitely a step in the right direction.”
No, it was much more than that. It was a statement from the former champion who has definitely stated he would get back the title he lost to Junior dos Santos last November.
The most important step now has been taken, and after Velasquez’s annihilation of Silva was complete, White intimated that Velasquez’s next challenge would be a rematch against dos Santos, who successfully defended his title against Frank Mir in the main event with an impressive performance of his own.
“That’s a good idea,” White said during the post-fight press conference when dos Santos vs. Velasquez II was suggested. “I like it.”
And, really, what’s not to like about it. Velasquez did exactly what he had to. He didn’t just win; he did it with plenty of style.
Moments into the opening Velasquez took the fight to the ground after catching a front kick from Silva and wrestled him to the ground. From there it was complete domination, complete with vicious ground-and-pound. Velasquez even cut open Silva with an elbow that created a stream of blood flowing from between his eyes, which both fighters rolled in for most of the fight.
Velasquez (10-1) wasn’t about to take all the credit for the victory, though, and showed some love for his training partner, Daniel Cormier, who defeated Silva (16-4) in the semifinals of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix tournament.
“Daniel Cormier, my teammate, fought Silva, and he told me some things that he saw when they fought,” Velasquez said.
Velasquez is a man on a mission. He clearly fought with a purpose. And now we’re all but set for an epic rematch that will give Velasquez the opportunity to do what he said he would all along.