Earlier this week, the mixed martial arts (MMA) community was concerned that former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight champion, Cain Velasquez, looked alarmingly slow when sparring in practice.
I guess Velasquez was on a mission to put those concerns to bed ahead of his Francis Ngannou fight, pounding the pads at the UFC on ESPN open workouts on Thursday in advance of this weekend’s headliner in Phoenix.
It’s hard to predict what to expect from the 36 year-old wrestler, who’s been plagued with injuries throughout his combat sports career. Velasquez (14-2) has competed just twice over the last five-plus years, losing his title to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 188 before rebounding with a technical knockout win over Travis Browne at UFC 200.
Here’s another look at the UFC Phoenix open workouts, including some pad work from Ngannou. “The Predator” (12-3) is hoping to build off his technical knockout win over Curtis Blaydes at UFC Beijing last November.
To see who else is fighting at UFC Phoenix this Sunday night on ESPN click here.