Not much has been heard from former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez after he knocked out Travis Browne at UFC 200 in July of 2016 (highlights), which was his first fight in over a year at that point.
That’s because Cain has been on the shelf due to a nagging back injury, which he had surgery for earlier this year to correct. But after more than a year away from action, the former 265-pound kingpin is getting the wheels in motion for a return to the cage.
According to his training partner and current UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, Velasquez is finally at a place where he can expect to go on a long run after losing out on five years of fight life due to constant injuries.
“He’s had a lot of injuries at bad times. I talked to Cain about this, and it sucks — for a guy who was talented and committed to the sport, he’s probably lost five years,” said Cormier on a recent edition of The MMA Hour (via MMA Fighting).
“Can you imagine what Cain Velasquez’s resume would look like without five years worth of time on the shelf? It’s so sad to think about, but I believe that he has finally gotten himself in a position where his body is going to be able to match his work ethic, his mind, his ferociousness, his mentality, everything, and allow him to go on a run — a long, sustained run — to kinda finish out his career,” he added.
Indeed, since October of 2013, Cain has only competed three times, slowing down the momentum of what looked to be a long and promising reign as heavyweight champion.
Now that he’s back in the gym routine, Cormier says his number one training partner is ready to make the heavyweight division interesting.
“He’s back to training, and it hurts, but it nothing’s felt better for a long time,” Cormier said. “It does suck to have to go in there and work with Cain, because he’s so much better than everybody else that’s ever been around, but it’s good to have him, man. Just seeing him back doing what he loves to do, it’s amazing as a friend and as a fan of mixed martial arts, because if Cain gets back, you guys know what he does for the heavyweight division. He makes for some very, very interesting and fun fights,” concluded the 205-pound champion.
While there is no exact date set for Cain’s comeback, it’s a good sign to see him back at full speed inside the gym. Once he returns, there will be no shortage of interesting bouts for him to take part in.
Who the champ is at that point in time, remains to be seen.