Velasquez: No intention of losing
I’m defending my UFC heavyweight title Saturday live on FOX. It is the first time any UFC fight has been on network TV, and I am excited and honored to be part of history.
I fight Junior dos Santos, the No. 1 contender. He is a very powerful puncher, probably the best boxer in the entire division, including me. He also has great stamina and a well-rounded game. He is the toughest opponent of my life.
He also had the advantage of having fought in June, three hard rounds with a top contender in Shane Carwin.
I have not fought since last October; I tore my rotator cuff winning the title from Brock Lesnar in the same arena in Anaheim I will be fighting in this weekend. I can’t say when I did it . . . I don’t remember it hurting in the fight at all but when I tried to sleep that night I couldn’t get comfortable at all in bed. Then the next morning, it really hurt.
When I was told what was wrong by doctors, I didn’t want surgery. I like to fight three or four times a year, and I knew surgery would mean 10 months or a year out just as I won the belt.
I tried to rehab my shoulder, but in the end I needed surgery.
In a way, though, the timing worked out. It sucked not being able to work out for months, and it was horrible not being able to sleep for weeks and weeks because I couldn’t get comfortable — a couple of nights I tried to sleep sitting up — but in the end I am back 100 percent and I am honored to fight in the first ever fight on FOX TV.
I spoke about JDS’s strengths. For those who haven’t seen me, I am well-rounded and hard-working as a fighter. There’s a lot of talk that I can’t get tired . . . I get tired plenty, believe me. It is just I can mentally push through it more than other fighters.
I represent hard-working people. That’s who raised me, my mother and father are very hard-working people. That’s who I grew up around, Mexican-Americans who work hard to achieve the American dream. I fight with a lot of heart . . . and that comes out of your character.
It was tough working back from being hurt, and you can’t help getting a little rusty. It seems like it’s been a long time since I was in the Octagon, even though I’ve had a lot of other things going on. I’m not worried, though. I know Junior thinks he will knock me out in two rounds, but I am mentally prepared for a five-round war. I’ve never lost a fight, and I don’t intend on losing the biggest one in my life.
Follow UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez on Twitter @cainmma.