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Cain Velasquez avoids shoulder surgery, but timetable for UFC return uncertain

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Cain Velasquez reveals he will not require surgery to repair a partially torn labrum and will instead undergo rehab before returning to the Octagon.

USA TODAY Sports

Breathe easy, fight fans, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez will not have to go under the knife to repair a partially torn labrum

According to UFC Tonight, Cain will instead rely on plenty of rehab to allow the injury -- which he suffered during his UFC 166 title fight against Junior dos Santos last month in Houston, Texas -- to heal up.

UFC had plans to venture into Mexico for the first time in 2014; however, with the initial scare that Velasquez would likely need surgery, Dana White and Co. pulled the plug on those plans because as the Las Vegas fight boss declared, "We're not going into Mexico without Cain."

While there is no clear timetable for Cain's return, plans to go south of the border could still be revived. That or Velasquez could possibly headline UFC 171, which goes down on March 15, 2014 in Dallas, Texas which, much like "H-Town," has a very strong Latino presence.

One thing that is certain, however, is that Cain's next title defense will come against jiu-jitsu ace Fabricio Werdum, who earned his crack at the division strap thanks to three dominant wins over Roy Nelson, Mike Russow and former 265-pound kingpin, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.

When and where the two big men tango for the gold, remains to be seen.