Cain Velasquez, the former UFC heavyweight champion and one of the greatest fighters of all time, has finally spoken out about the epic clash between Stipe Miocic and Jon Jones at UFC 295. Velasquez, who retired from MMA in 2019, gave his insights on the fight that saw Miocic reclaim the title from Jones in a stunning fifth-round knockout.
One of the most anticipated fights in UFC history took place between Miocic and Jones. Following years of dominance in the light heavyweight division, Jones made the jump to heavyweight in 2020 to confront Miocic, who had successfully defended his title three times against Daniel Cormier.
Jones won the first bout through unanimous decision at UFC 252. He is the second fighter in UFC history to hold two belts at once. However, Miocic was unsatisfied with the outcome and wanted a rematch, saying that an eye poke had negatively influenced his performance. UFC 295 would be the venue for the rematch.
The fight was a back-and-forth war that displayed the abilities and determination of both combatants. To keep Miocic away, Jones used his reach and kicks, but Miocic closed the distance and landed hard strikes thanks to his boxing and wrestling. The two combatants each had their moments of triumph, but neither was able to defeat their opponent. Jones appeared to be in the lead through the opening three rounds, landing more blows and dominating in the clinch.
In the fourth round, though, Miocic turned the fight around by dropping Jones with a right punch and then taking him down. Miocic controlled the fight and delivered some ground and pound, but Jones was able to make it to the finish of the round. Miocic came out swinging in the fifth and final round, sending Jones to the floor with a flurry of punches that showed no mercy.
Miocic pounced on him and never let up, landing punch after punch until the referee stopped the fight at 1:12 of the first round, giving him the knockout and the heavyweight championship.
The MMA world was stunned by the outcome of the fight, as Jones suffered his first legitimate loss in his career. Many fans and analysts praised Miocic for his resilience and determination, while others criticized Jones for his lack of adaptation and cardio.
Velasquez, who had faced both fighters in his career, gave his honest opinion on the fight in an interview with MMA Fighting. He said:
“It was a great fight. I think both guys showed a lot of heart and skill. I think Stipe did a great job of adjusting his game plan and finding a way to win. He showed why he is one of the best heavyweights ever. Jon is still a great fighter, but I think he underestimated Stipe’s power and toughness. He also looked a bit slower and heavier than usual. Maybe he should go back to light heavyweight or work on his conditioning more.”
Velasquez also revealed that he had predicted Miocic to win by knockout before the fight, based on his experience of fighting him in 2016. He said:
“I know how hard Stipe hits. He knocked me out in one punch when we fought. He has that one-punch knockout power that can change any fight. I also know how durable he is. He can take a lot of punishment and keep coming forward. I thought he had a good chance of catching Jon with something big and finishing him.”
Velasquez also expressed his admiration for both fighters and said that he would love to see a trilogy fight between them in the future.
The fight between Miocic and Jones had major implications for the heavyweight division and the UFC as a whole. Miocic cemented his legacy as one of the greatest heavyweights of all time, as he avenged his loss to Jones and regained the title for a record fourth time. He also proved that he could overcome adversity and defeat any opponent in front of him. Miocic now has several options for his next title defense, such as Francis Ngannou, Derrick Lewis, or Ciryl Gane.
Jones, faced a setback in his quest to become the greatest fighter of all time. He lost his unbeaten streak and his second UFC title in one night. He also faced some criticism for his performance and his decision to move up to heavyweight. Jones now has to decide whether he wants to stay at heavyweight and pursue a rematch with Miocic or return to light heavyweight and reclaim his throne there.
The fight also generated a lot of interest and revenue for the UFC, as it was reported to have sold over 2 million pay-per-view buys, making it one of the most successful events in UFC history. The fight also received rave reviews from fans and media, as it was hailed as one of the best fights of the year and one of the best heavyweight fights ever.