Cain Velasquez: 'I'm proud to be Mexican'
"He said, 'because you bad-mouthed me.' I'm sure that Cain Velasquez wanted to say, 'hi,' but someone told him something. I think it was Luke Rockhold. Do you know who Luke Rockhold is? That nobody. It could be that on the first episode of Embedded I said he isn't Mexican. He's American. His parents are Mexican. So, he's not 'Mexican, Mexican.' But he represents Mexico well. I always said that. We have to tell the truth."
Yes, Fabricio, we know who Luke Rockhold is, and yes, it probably was that insult that Cain was talking about. Also, while we value truth, Werdum's definition of it as his own personal valuation of someone's cultural identity is certainly far from the sincere and pious sounding notion that he tried to make it sound like.
In the crazy world of value-infused social constructs of race, ethnicity and even nationalism, no one can really ever win. Not Cain, whose parents immigrated from Mexico, who speaks Spanish and who says he spent summers making the short trip from his Arizona bordertown home to Mexico to visit family, and not Werdum.
At the end of the third episode of UFC 188 Embedded, Velasquez defended his cultural identification. "I am Mexican. My parents are from here," he said.
"I have the Mexican blood. I'm proud to be Mexican. Werdum has been out in public saying things. Then, this morning, he wants to say hello. Well, no. No, no."
Werdum is a proud Brazilian who moved from his home nation to Spain as a young man, and then spent time in Eastern Europe before immigrating to the United States to better his life, just as Cain's parents did. Who is more "real"?
Who cares? Werdum and Velasquez are both very real fighters who will get to settle their differences on Saturday, with their fists.
The soft-spoken defending champion likes to handle things that way, instead of verbally. However, if Werdum hoped to irritate Velasquez with his comments (hint - he did), than he appears to have largely succeeded.
Whether or not that will help the Brazilian on fight night remains to be seen. In closing, the American Kickboxing Academy fighter said he doesn't mind trash talk, just fakeness.
"It's fine if you want to say things like that [but] we're not going to be friends the next day," he said.
"If you're going to be like that, then be like that. Don't bad-mouth me and then try to be my friend. Don't do that."
Maybe Velasquez isn't Mexican enough for Werdum, but what the champ finds absurd is the act of trying to buddy-up with an opponent."That's so stupid," he said.
"I'm not your buddy, for one. I'm going to whoop your ass. It's ok, because I get to settle it on Saturday, and I'm happy about that. I get to settle it, physically."