18 Oct 2013 11:18:18 AM
Remember when Mark Hunt could have been the next contender for the heavyweight title? When everyone fantasized that the heavy-handed, iron-chinned Samoan might have challenged Cain Velasquez? It would have made an extraordinary narrative; the nigh-unbeatable champion facing a one-dimensional specialist who had improbably salvaged his career at the last possible opportunity with the ability to put anyone’s lights out. It’s the stuff movies are made of.
In this case, reality is better.
No disrespect to Mark Hunt or what he managed to achieve, but it’s a good thing Junior Dos Santos put him down with that spinning wheel kick. There is no better fight to make in the heavyweight division than Dos Santos vs. Velasquez. With Daniel Cormier dropping to light-heavyweight, none even come close. Velasquez and Dos Santos are the two best heavyweights by a considerable margin, each with the tools, the experience and the will necessary to defeat the other. Their story doesn’t depend on any degree of improbability, appeal to sentiment or require any context beyond this simple truth; that they are the epitome of their profession striving to attain a title beyond the title. They are attempting to lay claim to the title of the best heavyweight of their era, to establish the successor to The Last Emperor.
While both Dos Santos and Velasquez are well-rounded and durable, those qualities manifest themselves in different ways. Dos Santos is more fluid in his stand-up, hits with more power, and moves with seemingly less effort. His cardio is solid, and he actually has a relatively fast pace for a heavyweight. And in his loss to Velasquez last year, he showed an exceptional ability to mitigate damage from the bottom while regaining position and standing. Velasquez, on the other hand, seems to be force incarnate. He knows no direction but forward, his cardio is unrelenting, and while he lacks Dos Santos’ pure stand-up ability, he is able to transition effortlessly between kickboxing and wrestling. This is particularly effective because he always pushes forward, constantly threatening the takedown, which opens up opportunities for his underrated hands and hard kicks.Read More DIGG THIS