As you’ve likely heard by now, Velasquez has been forced to drop out of his February 6th rematch with Werdum as a result of a back injury. Stipe Miocic will now challenge “Vai Cavalo” for the title.
After his withdrawal was confirmed, Velasquez posted a statement on Facebook, and here is some of what he had to say:
“…Training camp has been difficult for the last few weeks, but sometimes no matter how much the heart and mind want to fight through an injury, healing has its own timeline. We thought we’d get through it, but we had to face the truth that it wasn’t going to be OK in time to fight. All of us fighters have all fought injured at one time or another, but I can’t ignore this injury, as my doctor has indicated that not addressing the problems with my sciatic nerve could have longer-term consequences.
My fans deserve to see me compete as close to 100% as possible. I’m committed to giving them that. I’m not going to let my fans down, and I want to make sure I do the right things to ensure a long career.
Fabricio, I hope that you accept my sincere apology. I understand how you may think this is an excuse. From one professional to another, I can tell you I was committed and looking forward to competing with you again. I greatly respect you as a fighter and man, and we will meet soon.”
Of course, if Miocic goes out and defeats Werdum, then maybe this rematch doesn’t happen so soon right? We’ll see what happens.
Werdum faced Velasquez last June and won the bout via third round, submission.