Quality wins create confidence. There's no two ways about it. With confidence comes bold opinion, and Ben Rothwell's appearance on yesterday's MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, following his big win over Saturday night, certainly proved that. While waiting for his spot on the interview roster, Ben caught the last comments made by AKA head coach, , who had stated that he felt was the only real threat to current heavyweight champion, Cain Velasquez.
Rothwell took exception to this, and questioned how Cain will fare in his fights after July 1st, when the UFC's new anti-doping regime goes into effect. When Velasquez was informed at a media luncheon to promote UFC 188 and pressed for comment, he had this to say on the subject, as reported by MMA Fighting's Marc Raimondi:
When informed of Rothwell's remarks later Monday afternoon, the UFC heavyweight champion chuckled.
"That I am?" Velasquez said at a media lunch to promote UFC 188 on Saturday in Mexico City. "That's a big compliment for me, because I'm never known for physique. For someone to point that out, I'm kind of flattered."
Velasquez (13-1) said he was surprised by Rothwell's comments to Ariel Helwani and that perhaps Rothwell was just trying to draw a headline.
"Did you watch his after-fight speech?" Velasquez said with a laugh. "Maybe it's coming from that, I don't know."
The champ felt it was very odd that Rothwell would make such accusatory statements toward him and once again pointed to his post fight speech.
"Yeah, definitely it is," Velasquez said. "Not being a guy who's known for his physique, known for not being on anything. I've been tested before numerous times, before and after all my fights the day of. Again, watch his after-fight speech and you can find out where he's coming from."
Velasquez says he hasn't been tested out of competition in the lead up to his UFC 188 title bout with current interim champion,, but fully expects to be tested on Saturday night.
On July 1st, every fighter on the UFC roster can be expected to test 5.5 times per year on average. With USADA laying the groundwork for the new testing rules and regulations, fighters are expected to make their whereabouts known at all times, no matter where they are in the world. Cain says he doesn't have a problem with that.
"Doesn't matter to me," Velasquez said with a laugh. "You want to test me right now?"