Heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and top-contender Fabricio Werdum will be seeing plenty of one another before they meet inside the Octagon. The two will serve as head coaches on “The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America” before headlining the promotion’s first-ever event in Mexico. Velasquez vs. Werdum is scheduled to headline UFC 180 in Mexico City on Nov. 15. The announcements were officially made today by UFC President Dana White during a media conference in Mexico.
Velasquez has been on the mend since undergoing shoulder surgery after a dominant win against Junior dos Santos at UFC 166. The champion pummelled “Cigano” en route to a fifth-round TKO and ended their trilogy in emphatic fashion by taking the rubber match. Velasquez has established himself as the division’s best fighter, but injury issues have been a concern. If all goes according to plan, the champion should be able to meet the targeted return date.
He’s avenged his only loss to JDS with a pair of dominant performances and is ready to face a stern challenge in the form of the dangerous Brazilian submission specialist. Velasquez is an impressive 11-1 inside the Octagon with nine victories by way of knockout.
Werdum earned his title shot with a highly impressive effort against the dangerous Travis Browne. “Vai Cavalo” put a five-round beatdown on the towering Hawaiian in earning the unanimous decision victory at UFC on FOX 11. Werdum has become more than just a jiu-jitsu ace as his striking game has improved tremendously during his second stint with the organization. He’s currently riding a four-fight Octagon win streak thanks to other victories against Roy Nelson, Mike Russow and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.
White had maintained that the organization wouldn’t do an event in Mexico until Velasquez was ready to go. The champion is of Mexican-American heritage and will no doubt be a major draw.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports.