Cain Velasquez targets November return, expects to face Travis Browne
DALLAS — Cain Velasquez has not started training yet after underdoing shoulder surgery in December and he’s being patient with the rehab process. But he does have a target month that he’d like to be ready by.
"November sounds good," Velasquez said Friday before UFC 171 weigh-ins at Gilley’s Dallas. "Hopefully with rehab and everything else, that would be enough time to get ready. I pretty much want to get back as soon as possible."
The UFC heavyweight champion’s return fight will almost certainly be in Mexico. UFC president Dana White has said repeatedly that the organization will debut south of the border as soon as Velasquez, a Mexican American, is ready.
"It’s one of my dreams to fight there," Velasquez said.
As for who he’ll be fighting, Velasquez expects to see Travis Browne across the Octagon in the fall. Browne meets Fabricio Werdum in a title eliminator bout April 19 at FOX UFC Saturday in Orlando. Werdum is better on the ground, Velasquez said, but the champ predicts a Browne victory.
I’m kind of figuring [Travis] Browne a little more.
-Cain Velasquez on who he thinks he'll fight next
"Both guys are tough," Velasquez said. "I think Travis Browne might be a little better on his feet with his overall length, power and the way he moves is really quick. … I’m kind of figuring Browne a little more."
Velasquez already had shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum on his right arm, so he doesn’t expect any complications from this surgery on his right shoulder. When he comes back, though, Velasquez is hoping to fight just twice a year. He fought three times in 11 months in 2012 and 2013, calling that "a little busy for me."
When pressed Velasquez said he would fight more if the UFC wanted him to, but his preference is just two times per year.
"That’s what I want," he said. "That’s what I like. If I had it my way, I would."