UFC 188: Keys to Victory Cain Velasquez Josh Cate June 11, 2015 News, Previews, Spotlight October of 2013. This was the last time the Mexican Mauler which, is Cain Velasquez, stepped into the octagon. The injury prone champion is finally set to do battle south of the border in Mexico City on Saturday, June 13. The landscape of the heavyweight division looks slightly different from when the champion left. Velasquez will be taking on interim champion, Fabricio Werdum. Let’s take a look at what the champ needs to do to unify the belts. Press on the Gas There’s no denying that Velasquez has more endurance than any other heavyweight on the planet. A smothering wrestling/striking combination has sucked the life out numerous opponents. While his opponent is no slouch in the cardio department, I think Velasquez has a considerable edge. Velasquez likes to march forward and throw punches in combinations then mixing in takedowns. Even when the takedown doesn’t work, Velasquez is great at chaining strikes off of it. This makes it hard for his opponents to settle in. Keeping the challenger off balance with high volume attack could be the biggest weapon Velasquez brings to the cage. Cage Fighting Not only is AKA, the champ’s home gym, but it’s a great wrestling gym; Cain was a Division 1 wrestler. Being able to dictate where the fight goes is a huge advantage over any opponent. Going to the ground with Werdum may not be the smartest thing to do, however. Velasquez has an impressive 89% takedown defense accuracy, so good luck taking him down to the ground. As Velasquez showed in his last fight against Dos Santos, he has the ability to keep his opponents against the cage and smother them with aggression. It’s a safe strategy to stay away from the unorthodox striking of Werdum, as well as staying away from one of the best ground games in MMA. Look for the champ to use this strategy to slow Werdum and try and snatch the belt from his waist in the later rounds. Don’t Hesitate Many questions surround the champion in regards to his training methods as well as a fragile body. If Velasquez comes out slow, it will give Werdum confidence. It will pay off greatly for Velasquez to come out strong to dictate the mindset of the fight. A confident, aggressive Velasquez is hard to handle, while a slow start may give his opponent confidence to take over. Confidence is a huge intangible in the fight game and Velasquez needs to have it. Velasquez has all the tools to be the greatest heavyweight of all time. The biggest adversary to this title has been injury. This Saturday night we’ll see if the champion is able to overcome injury, as well as a layoff, to become undisputed heavyweight kingpin.