Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Carwin vs. Velasquez : A Bad Idea

As we tend to do in the fight game, speculation and rumors are running wild about who will be headlining the yet to be announced Fall fights in the UFC. While we know UFC 103 is going to take place in Dallas, we don't know who will have their names up in lights.

One co-main event fight sounds like it's going to be Mike Swick versus Matt Hughes, which I'll talk about some other time when the violent rage the thought of this fight builds in me subsides.

Another bout that is getting a lot of talk around the Internet is a heavyweight eliminator bout between Shane Carwin and Cain Velasquez. For the love of all things holy, Joe Silva - please don't make this fight!

Not that it wouldn't be awesome. Of course it would; both are impressive specimens with unblemished records and would provide a quality heavyweight tilt.

That being said, why would you even consider throwing one of your prized heavyweight prospects under the bus?

Each of these guys have been on the receiving end of the UFC hype machine (with good reason) and stand somewhere in line behind the winner of the Couture - Nogueira fight as the next challenger for the heavyweight title. In my books, Carwin is ahead of Velasquez and by a decent margin at that.

Sticking these two inside the octagon together would automatically bump the loser down the charts and ruin the momentum the UFC has spent the last year and change building with each of them.

Cain already hit a minor speed bump in his uneventful decision win over Cheick Kongo last month in Germany and having his face smashed in by the frying pans Carwin launches would send him back to the preliminary card against newcomers like it has Gabe Gonzaga.

If the opposite were to happen and Velasquez came away with the win - most likely through some serious wrestling / ground and pound combo - Carwin takes the same fall and guys like me would start talking about how he's one dimensional and needs to build on his powerful striking.

Either way, a guy that the UFC has put serious effort into promoting falls a few rungs lower on the ladder and for what? To build up another guy that everyone already expects to see fighting for the heavyweight title within the next year?

The real problem is that there are few true challengers in the UFC heavyweight division. Six guys have cleaned out the division really, leaving matches between themselves as the only meaningful options to fans.

Some combination of Lesnar, Mir, Couture, Nogueria, Carwin and Velasquez have beaten everyone else the UFC could possible throw into the mix, which is why we're set to see the debut of a bunch of new heavyweights like Todd Duffee and Chris Tuchscherer.

Outside of bringing in guys like Jeff Monson, Ben Rothwell or *shudder* Andrei Arlovski and Tim Sylvia, Carwin and Velasquez almost have to fight or else face an extended period of inactivity.

Unfortunately, it means one great prospect moves forward while the other takes a big step backwards.

Funny, I always thought the idea was to have as many ready and worthy challengers as possible, not leave yourself with only one option.


  1. The next logical fight for Carwin is the winner of Couture - Nogiera. Either is a good test for him, adds some experience to a still thin resume, elevates his with a win, and desn't crush him if he loses. That said, the fight ends in the first round. If you want to see him tested beyond the first round, bring in Monson.

  2. Cain beats Carwin and gets a title shot too soon and loses.

  3. Just puzzled as to why people have such a low opinion of Arlovski. I see that he doesn't appear to be all that serious about MMA but if he sucks as badly as many seem to think, then we've really overestimated Fedor. Though Fedor eventually nicely KO'd Andrei, the latter was hurting Emelianenko until Fedor stopped him whereas Fedor had no problem whatsoever with Sylvia. So, to continue discussing Sylvia and Arlovski as if they're 2 sides of the same coin, as Dana White has done, seems to be vastly underestimating Arlovski. Arlovski needs to regroup in a big way if he's ever to make it back to the UFC but he is still a dangerous fighter even for someone of Fedor's caliber as he demonstrated in their recent matchup.

  4. P.S. Cain V. will be completely overwhelmed by Carwin. Kongo, who would also be easily beaten by Carwin, simply handed Velasquez the fight by not following up when he' had him nearly KO'd and by failing to use takedown defense against an opponent whose specialty is wrestling(!)---the main flaw in a very lame strategy.

  5. Joe Silva must have read this article when he bumped Carwin up to fight Brock.

    Impressive insight!

  6. always wanted to see carwin fight brock because of the size match. but brock seems to have a broader game which should overwhelm carwin but i would love to see someone beat brock. cant wait to see! i almost dont want to rent the fight bc of the blind deaf and dumb judges who gave the fight to machida last week ! i almost threw up in my mouth. he might have won one out of 5 rounds! does anyone agree with the decision

  7. So??? Who is the winner?? I didn't watch the fight since I have to go to abroad. Did Carwin win this? It must have great fight that I miss. This is almost two years and I'm so regret for not watching the game. Glad to find this blog....:D:D:D:D


Tell us what you think - good, bad or indifferent - and get ready for a counterpunch.