Cain Velasquez has the date and opponent for his first title defense, and it will be against a familiar foe. No, it will not be a rubber match with Junior dos Santos, but instead a rematch with Antonio Silva. Their fight will take place Memorial Day weekend, on May 25, and the event will be held at the MGM Garden Arena in Las Vegas, N.V. It will be exactly one year since Silva and Velasquez met for the first time back at UFC 146, when Velasquez finished Silva in under four minutes. Many people are wondering how this fight will be any different.
What they have to remember is that the fight with Velasquez was his first in the Octagon, and Silva was coming off an eight-month layoff where he was knocked out in the first round. He was going to be welcomed into the Octagon in a bout against Roy Nelson, but the bout was changed to Velasquez, and a co-main event slot, a month out when Alistair Overeem failed a surprise drug test. The fighting styles of Nelson and Velasquez are vastly different, and only having a month to train for a former champion, who is hungry for a win, is a big task for anyone in their debut.
Since that time Silva went on to take out rising prospect Travis Browne and the aforementioned Overeem by TKO. If anyone should know about quick finishes not meaning anything in a rematch, it should be Velasquez. He took on Dos Santos exactly a year after he was finished in the first round, and he beat JDS from bell to bell for five rounds. Plus, he only had one fight in between, and Silva has proven himself with two big wins. This was the only logical match to make, and in the sport of MMA, you never know what is going to happen so you should not be counting Silva out.