After over a year of wondering if the first fight was a fluke, Junior dos Santos and Cain Velasquez met up in the Octagon at last night's (Sat., Dec. 29, 2012) UFC 155 event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, to determine once and for all who the better man is between the two.
Or something like that.
"Cigano" knocked "Brown Pride" out in 64 seconds in their first meeting but it was widely expected there was no way in hell he could do it twice.
Velasquez came out fast and furious, rushing across the cage to throw punches at the champion just to set up his takedown attempts, which came quickly but bore no fruit. In fact, the Brazilian reversed one and avoided all others entirely.
Velasquez kept up a strong pace and Dos Santos looked awful all throughout the first. Cain jumped him with big punches and with roughly one minute to go, knocked him down with a hard shot and pounced with a relentless barrage of shots.
"Cigano" made it to the second round but as Joe Rogan pointed out, "this is the real Cain Velasquez, all due respect to the first fight."
That was a kind way of saying he was whooping Junior's ass from pillar to post. The early embarrassing takedown attempts were forgotten in favor of his knocking down a previously invulnerable champion, a knockout machine who was never in trouble before.
Dos Santos missed an uppercut to start the second and Velasquez made him pay for it with a combination that landed clean and staggered the champion once again.
It was ugly. Dos Santos was hurt and what's worse, he looked tired and worn with three minutes to go in round two. Considering the gas tank Velasquez possesses, this looked like it could go on until the judges scored a decision for Cain to give him his title back.
Velasquez threatened with an armbar towards the end of the round but "JDS" managed to get out, simply delaying the inevitable.
After two rounds, it looked like Cain was up 20-16.
Before the start of the third, the camera showed Junior's battered face. Bruised and marked up, he gamely answered the call to come out and continue the bloodletting. He even ripped a hard shot to the body in an attempt at showing some life.
But another takedown and even more pressure from Cain put an end to all that.
Velasquez continued to have his way as the two headed into the championship rounds. Velasquez looked fresh and clean, Dos Santos looked beaten and worn.
The fourth round was a replay of the first three, although on a much smaller scale. Velasquez punished and pushed Junior around, not doing as much damage but clearly controlling the fight and winning the round.
As the fifth round started, it was clear "JDS" needed a knockout. It just didn't look like he even had the strength to deliver it anymore.
Sure enough, he didn't, and as the horn sounded it brought with it the beginning of the second heavyweight championship reign of Cain Velasquez.
The final scores were an astounding 50-45, 50-43, and 50-44. Talk about a beating.
For complete UFC 155 results and blow-by-blow coverage of all the night's action click here.