Cain Velasquez prepared to set the pace at UFC 188
By: Elias Cepeda, FOX Sports
"Many athletes will tell you that after a serious knee injury, like the type suffered by Cain Velasquez last year, it's harder to recover psychologically than it is physically. That is, even after a ligament is physically healed and stable, it can take a while for a fighter to once more trust that knee to do what they need it to do.
"This was not the case for the UFC heavyweight champion. After rupturing an MCL, Velasquez was forced out of his scheduled UFC 180 heavyweight title defense against Fabricio Werdum last November.
"Velasquez had already been out for a year with a previous injury when he injured his knee. So no one would have blamed the champ if he ended up a bit timid with his recovery.
"Velasquez tells FOX Sports that his doctors needed to rein him in, however. 'I didn't have a problem trusting the knee when I started training again and using it. I wanted to get back in the gym,' he says.
"'Fighters want to get back in there as soon as they can so the challenge was doing the right thing, listening to the doctors and waiting until they said it was healed enough.'
"Another tough part of Velasquez's recovery and time out was simply making ends meet. The pain of healing injuries and frustration of not being able to compete were compounded by the stress of not bringing home any fight purses since October of 2013 for Velasquez."
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