Cain vs. Junior III: Their Defining Moment.

Posted: October 19, 2013 in MMA
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Jason Head_Shot[1]

By Jason Sutcliffe

Junior Dos Santos and Cain Velasquez are two of the very best heavyweights in UFC history. This is more than a fight; this truly is a legacy fight. When they meet in the Octagon, this Saturday the winner will emerge as the best of this era and perhaps any era of heavyweights in UFC history.

This is a very fun fight; it is a classic grappler vs. striker match-up, and two completely different fight philosophies.

In their first fight, Junior was able to land the perfect punch, and not because it was lucky but because that is what he does. Junior is not a “dog fight” type of fighter like Cain is. Junior prefers to use his footwork and throw calculated, accurate, powerful punches.

His takedown defence has been so good in his career that, that game plan has worked for him. He has more stopping power than Cain, and he knows it. He knows that if he can land a clean shot he can stop Cain.

Cain has more avenues to victory than Junior does; his grappling, cardio, clinch boxing, and striking output are all problems for Junior. Junior has to respect Cain’s wrestling ability to the point where it opens up opportunities for Cain to get the better of the striking exchanges.

Cain’s pace broke Junior early in the second fight; He is relentless and has that wrestlers work ethic. He never stops—ever. He stays in your face and active for the whole 25 minutes.

Much like the second fight Cain has to get off first. Junior is not a counter boxer he is an aggressive power puncher. If Cain can beat him to the punch he should be able to back Junior up and nullify a great deal of his power. It will also be important for Cain to beat up Junior’s legs, and slow his movement down. That will make it a bit easier for Cain to get in on the legs of Junior and score some takedowns.

Junior will have to do a lot of things differently if he wants to be successful against Cain. He needs to mix things up; he has got to make Cain think about something other than his boxing. He needs to throw in some kicks, or shoot for some takedowns, anything that makes Cain think. That will open up opportunities for Junior to put his boxing to work.

Also, Junior needs to focus on the body of Cain in the first round, maybe the first two. He needs to take away Cain’s advantages in the later rounds. Junior hits hard, and if he can unload on the body of Cain he will be able to slow him down and bring his hands down a bit, and open up Cain’s head. If he can do that the advantage should sway Junior’s way.

I have to lean Cain’s way in this one. I believe that his pace and style of fighting makes a horrible match-up for Junior. Junior has one avenue that brings the title back to Brazil with him, and that is to KO Cain Velasquez. Cain, has the ability to ground-and-pound Junior, out point Junior with his grappling skills, and also to grind Junior out, and make him wilt under the constant pressure. Cain in my opinion is going to grind Junior down and dominate him to a 5 round decision.

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