Cain Velasquez appeared on the latest edition of ‘The MMA Hour’ radio show on Monday to discuss his continued knee troubles that kept him from defending his heavyweight title at UFC 180 against Fabrico Werdum this coming weekend in Mexico.
Velasquez had been set to come back after shoulder surgery which kept him out of action this year, but once he was back in training it became apparent that his right knee was causing serious problems.
“I felt it was pretty loose,” Velasquez told Ariel Helwani. “In training I felt like my body would switch one way but my leg would kinda stay in one direction. So I kinda felt like, it wasn’t stable.”
It turned out that Velasquez had a torn meniscus and sprained MCL, but at first he decided to continue to push through the pain barrier.
“It just sucked, you know what I mean. Going through practice everyday, and just limiting [myself], not really doing the stuff that I could do as far as rolling. I tried to roll, some days I could, some days I couldn’t, and I just said, hey, I’m going to just baby it until I get two weeks out, and once I get two weeks out I’m going to try to do everything. Kick, be on the ground, it doesn’t matter, but I’m going to do what I can to make the fight.”
UFC 180 would have been a huge deal for Velasquez. He’s the UFC’s biggest star in Mexico and it would have been a dream come true to headline the first ever event there, but in the end even he had to come to the painful realization that it just wasn’t meant to be.
“When I finally realized that I can’t do it, it’s just not working for me, it just sucked. It felt like something was destined, you know what I mean. Like, this is where I’m destined to be, I’m destined to fight on this card, and it just didn’t turn out that way. So it was just kind of devastating to me.”
The 32 year-old now hopes to be ready to fight again early next year and, assuming he can stay injury free, he’ll then go on to a title unification bout with the winner of Saturday’s new main event which finds Mark Hunt stepping in to face Werdum with the interim heavyweight belt on the line.