A hugely disappointed Cain Velasquez confirmed last night that a freak knee injury in the Octagon led to his knockout against Francis Ngannou in the main event of UFC On ESPN 1.
Ngannou had only appeared to land grazing blows as Velasquez moved in for a takedown early in the fight, but suddenly he had collapsed to the canvas grimacing in pain, with subsequent replays appearing to show that his knee had just given way, and the former champion confirmed that was the case.
“He didn’t even, like, touch me,” Velasquez said at the post-fight press conference “It was just the knee. As soon as I felt the knee buckle, it was like I couldn’t believe that happened, and that was it.”
Despite the knee issue happening just 26 seconds into the fight, the injury-prone Velasquez insisted that he’d had a great training camp and is still determined to return to action once he’s healed up.
“Knowing what I did the past three years and two months getting ready for this camp, I felt ready. The octagon was the place I needed to be, and I felt great coming back. I felt great in there with him, and again, the freak accident of the knee popping out, it’s frustrating.
“We’ll get it all checked out. The fire’s strong in me again still. I guess I’ve got a lot to prove, and I’m very capable of doing that.”