The Port Arthur News
PORT ARTHUR —
The second consecutive Memorial Day weekend UFC event was one to remember as
heavyweights collided to gain and maintain supremacy.
For two years the UFC has highlighted their New Year's weekend events with heavyweight fighters,
conveniently providing them five months of rest and training to align them with
the late May showdowns. It would be a shrewd move if the UFC maintained this
The main event of this UFC 160 card last weekend didn't surprise the hometown
Vegas oddsmakers. Reigning heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez made quick work
of challenger Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva. Barely past a minute into the first
round Velasquez staggered Bigfoot with a left-right combination which dropped
The well-rounded champ worked for a guillotine submission then
transitioned to punches to earn a TKO victory.
A side note about Bigfoot Silva – I've learned some athletes and people are
tailor-made for their nicknames. I met Bigfoot Silva at the 2011 Strikeforce
Heavyweight Grand Prix event in Dallas. With his size, appearance and gait he
cannot help but being called "Bigfoot."
The other heavyweight attraction from UFC 160 featured former UFC heavyweight
champion Junior dos Santos against New Zealander Mark Hunt who got 11th hour
admittance into the USA after clearing visa issues.
This was expected to be a striking clinic pitting Mark Hunt's world class K-1
two-dimensional kickboxing abilities against Junior dos Santos' one dimensional
upper body striking. Dos Santos has fought like a tree with its roots planted
firmly into the ground. Fans were surprised by the outcome.
The fight went deep into the third round when dos Santos launched and
landed a spinning heel kick to the head of Hunt laying him out on the canvas.
He followed up with a punch and and got the victory by knockout. Going into the
bout people probably felt more likely to see a heel kick pulled off by a
magnolia rather than dos Santos.
The UFC heavyweight picture is in a pickle now. Velasquez remains at the
top and dos Santos is now the number one contender after his victory.
But Velasquez and JDS have already fought – twice. A rubber match would be
nice but three fights in about a two year span is not very
enticing to fans.
Another top heavyweight and fresh face to fight Velasquez is Strikeforce Grand
Prix winner Daniel Cormier. But there is a caveat. Cormier and Velasquez are
great friends who train together at American Kickboxing Academy. They have
stated they will not fight each other.
There are other possible suitors to challenge further down the road such as
Alistair Overeem, Fabricio Werdum, and newly signed heavyweight Josh Barnett.
But for now fans are most likely looking at Velasquez vs. Dos Santos III in the
David Estrada Jr. is a Mixed Martial Arts columnist for the Port Arthur News. He can be e-mailed at DavidEstrada@DavidEstrada.com