Cain Velasquez’s absence from mixed martial arts has been a struggle not only for the sport but also for one of the baddest men in the planet himself. Now, his upcoming performance will tell if he will be out of fighting for good.
The former heavyweight champ is reeling back from a two-year hiatus with an upcoming fight against knockout sensation Francis Ngannou. Despite his inactivity, the 36-year-old now wants to showcase a high-level performance and vows to retire if he disappoints himself.
In an interview with Yahoo Sports, ‘Cardio Cain’ recalled the pangs of the injuries that put him in the sidelines for more than two years. Velasquez said it was the most difficult struggle he had to deal with in terms of his physical well-being.
“When I had the injury, it was something that was extremely hard to deal with, to live with. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. When it was at its worst, it was bad. It’s something I’d say was the hardest thing I’ve ever gone through physically,” Velasquez stated.
“Just standing for 15 minutes is probably the worst pain I’ve ever gone through.”
Now that the former heavyweight titleholder is ready to endure full 25 minutes of standing and grappling vs Ngannou on Sunday night, he expects himself to perform better than ever. Velasquez is planning to wear back the identity he had during his reign as heavyweight champ.
“The reason I do this is to be the No. 1 guy. And if I’m not as competitive as I was before, then I’m not doing it. But I also believe that I am that same guy,” Cain said via Yahoo Sports.
“I’ve improved a lot and right now, I feel stronger than ever, stronger than in the past. Obviously, in that fight against Travis Browne, I am stronger than that. My body feels better than I did then with the time off I’ve taken.”
On his continuing statement, Velasquez is making his fans root for him more after proclaiming that if he winds up unsatisfied with his performance against Ngannou, he will hang up his gloves for good.
“I just have a lot of confidence to go out and win this fight. I expect to go out and compete at a high-level. If I can’t do that, then I’m not going to do this any more,” the former UFC champ vowed.
“But the way I feel now, I feel great and feel like I can keep going for quite a while more.”
When asked about Dana White infamously comparing Francis Ngannou’s power to that of a 96 horsepower Ford Escort, Velasquez had quite the comeback:
”Ford Escorts suck,” Velasquez said, per MMA Mania’s Ryan Harkness. “They’re weak. Weak ass Ford Escort. Is that the best [White] could come up with? He said ‘Ford Escort, that’s it. That’s the one.’”
”I dunno, it’d be better than that,” Velasquez said when asked what car he’d be compared to. “Anything would be better than that. They don’t even make Ford Escorts any more, do they? It should offend Francis, not me. I wasn’t called a Ford Escort.”
Watch Cain Velasquez taking his coach Javier Mendez on a little ride around NYC below:
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Cain Velasquez