Originally slated for the UFC 152 event scheduled for Toronto, Canada on September 22nd, 2012, the Heavyweight Title fight between Junior Dos Santos and Cain Velasquez looks to be moving. Apparently, the UFC is planning to have the UFC 153 event back in Brazil after a successful event there this last weekend, and a Dos Santos defense at home makes sense from a marketing perspective. This would push back the fight until mid October, as the card is planned for the 13th of October in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Or will the UFC change course and possibly go with a different fight? Let’s take a look…
Right now, the UFC Heavyweight Title picture consists of three men – the champion Junior Dos Santos and the clear number one contender Cain Velasquez. Fabrizio Werdum seems to have bullied his way into the title picture with an impressive win over Mike Russow in Brazil. Like Velasquez, Werdum was taken out by champ Dos Santos in the first minutes of the opening round, but he has the skillset to potentially be a threat to Dos Santos in a rematch.
It isn’t going to be easy to ask Velasquez to wait, but the logical move might be to have Werdum slide into the Brazil headline fight with Dos Santos, and then have the winner take on Velasquez for the end of year event.
Or will Wedum be passed over all together? If the UFC chooses to go with Cain Velasquez versus Dos Santos in Brazil, does a Brazilian vs Brazilian main event make sense for the end of the year show?
Additionally, there is the spectre of Alistair Overeem, who had earned a title shot but is serving a doping suspension. His suspension makes him available in December.
Here is a solution… Let Velasquez and Dos Santos battle it out in Brazil. October until December is too short a turnaround anyway, so go with Werdum and Overeem in a qualifier. Overeem should not be granted an immediate title shot, and Werdum’s last loss was a decision to Overeem, so a rematch is not uncalled for.
Yes the UFC is looking to return to Brazil this year, and a Werdum-Dos Santos match may have it’s appeal, but the current match with Velasquez is what should stay on the books. Changing the dates on the athletes is bad enough, but alas, business is business. Save Werdum for Overeem’s return.