As expected the winner of Saturday's UFC 116 headliner between heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar (4-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) and interim title-holder Shane Carwin (12-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) next will fight undefeated contender Cain Velasquez (8-0 MMA, 6-0 UFC).
UFC president Dana White previously hinted at the plans, and he today confirmed them with MMAjunkie.com (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps | MMAjunkie.com
"Cain fights the winner of this fight, probably as soon as possible," White told MMAjunkie.com. "Cain's been waiting a long time."
Velasquez staked claim to a title shot in February with a quick first-round knockout of Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 110. The fight was Velasquez's eighth straight and followed additional UFC wins over Brad Morris, Jake O'Brien, Denis Stojnic, Cheick Kongo and Ben Rothwell.
The former NCAA Division I All-American wrestler actually signed with the UFC after just two pro bouts, primarily because he and American Kickboxing Academy trainer Javier Mendez struggled to find opponents in outside organizations. Velasquez actually sat out of competition from December 2006 to April 2008 after one opponent after another pulled out of scheduled fightS.
He'll now keep a close eye on the outcome of Saturday's headliner, which is likely to determine the world's No. 1 heavyweight. The heavyweight title-unification bout is expected to produce one of the company's biggest PPV audiences and has already resulted in a virtual sellout of the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.