Cain Velasquez is snapping his two-and-a-half-year fighting hiatus with his ‘perfect come-back opponent’ Francis Ngannou at UFC Phoenix on February 17.
Give Them A Show
Prior to the highly-anticipated competition, the former UFC heavyweight champion and knockout sensation Ngannou braved the rare sight of rain to attend the traditional open workouts at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Arizona.
Velasquez and Ngannou are equally excited to their Sunday night’s showdown; sharing the game plans and level of performance they are waiting to unveil inside the Octagon. ‘The Predator’ also revealed how he is planning to defeat the fighter he’s been calling out for two years.
“I’m very excited for this fight week in Arizona because I’m gonna face Cain Velasquez. I’m gonna fight a fighter that I’ve been waiting for since two years ago,” Ngannou told reporters via UFC.
“Fans can expect Francis to have fun, give them a show and I’m just gonna give it all and I’ll come back there with the win.”
Ngannou kicked off the open workouts by showcasing his power on the pads. Though there were no knockout punches thrown, fans are expecting the KO fighter to exhibit his legendary uppercut of Allistair Overeem on Velasquez at fight night.
Watch as “The Predator” lifts his trainer off the ground with knees and kicks as well as showing some nice punching and elbows:
Stronger Than Ever
Aside from this, the knockout sensation has also spoken about bouncing back from his two straight losses to finish Curtis Blaydes in the first round at Fight Night Beijing.
“That was very important for me because, after those two losses, you can’t just walk around and tell people that you’re okay,” Ngannou said.
The former Arizona State All-America wrestler, on the other hand, was welcomed with a loud ovation by his familiar crowd. He is now putting his fans’ hopes up for a comeback win; saying he is currently at his greatest shape to climb back to the top of the heavyweight pyramid.
“Fans can expect a fast-paced fight, my style of fighting. Just a true Mexican fighter out there, coming blow to blow, putting the pressure on [my rival] and always going forward,” Velasquez told reporters at the open workouts via UFC.
“I get to prove that [since] my fight is coming up, how much I’ve improved during the time off and how good the rest is for your body that time off. Again, I feel stronger than ever, no lying injuries. Right through it, I feel great. I’m just blessed that I get this opportunity to come back and fight here,” ‘Cardio Cain’ told MMA Fighting.
Velasquez has also recalled Ngannou’s callout from two years ago; saying now is the chance to prove his skills against the 32-year-old fighter inside the Octagon.
“I heard him talking, I didn’t say something back. When he got on my radar, it is for this fight. There’s always ifs and buts. There’s no reason to get into it with anybody over social media. It just seems very immature to me, we can prove it one on one, so I get to do that,” Cain stated.
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