White: Cain Velasquez is next GSP-level star


With the retirement of Georges St-Pierre and year long injury of Anderson Silva, the UFC doesn't really have a huge star. But Dana White is hopefully that heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez can be that star:

"Cain Velasquez, too, we're literally riding him down to Mexico," White said on Friday.  "I wouldn't even go to Mexico without Cain Velasquez.  Cain Velasquez is a huge star, too. When you have an entire country that's going to follow and support you, there's nothing bigger than that."

The support of an entire country seems to be the difference between being a star and being a superstar in the UFC.  St-Pierre had it with Canada and over time he built his stardom into a brand, and was the biggest draw on pay-per-view in the UFC.

Velasquez could follow suit with the UFC's push into Mexico, and soon the company could have another megastar cash cow raking in huge numbers at the box office.

"You can argue it's Jon Jones, it's Ronda (Rousey), they don't have Canada riding on their backs.  They don't have Mexico riding on their backs.  When you can get a whole country behind you, that's when you know what a big star you are," White said.

"Cain is, he's the guy everyone cares about down there.  Biggest press conference in Telavisa history when we went down there."

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tags: Dana White   Georges St-Pierre (detail)  Cain Velasquez (detail)  


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Recent Comments »

Thomas Pickles site profile image  

6/21/14 5:59 PM by Thomas Pickles

Ronda Rousey is more recognizable worldwide than Cristiano Ronaldo.

rkm456 site profile image  

6/21/14 5:59 PM by rkm456

GSP is right up there with the national hockey team, and maple syrup? No, not even close. He's more like the Toronto Raptors. He has a decent sized, consistent fan base, but his popularity only really swells with casual sports fans when he's involved with something potentially big. Rest of the time, most people don't know he exists. Yes, he absolutely sells ppv's in Canada, no question, but people don't live or die by the outcomes of his fights like they do with hockey.I'll be the first to admit that he should be one of the most revered Canadian athletes to ever live. Whether you enjoyed his fighting style or not he's the undisputed welterweight GOAT, and to some P4P GOAT, but he just isn't a household name like Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Sidney Crosby, etc. and the reality is the poster who said "Bret Hart is more popular" is telling the truth.

Kinkle site profile image  

6/21/14 5:58 PM by Kinkle

This and the UFC is bigger then the NFL globally, and will eventually be bigger then the World Cup.....I file this comment under the other DFW predictions...

Nah Dude Fk That site profile image  

6/21/14 5:47 PM by Nah Dude Fk That

es normal

Bry Bry site profile image  

6/21/14 4:48 PM by Bry Bry

well only idiots would think that his tattoo wouldnt hurt his likeability among certain demographics..lets be honest here..i dont care that much about his tattoo although i think its silly and pointless but overall i dont get excited for his fights.. im not sure about Pettis, he is fun to watch but again, most casuals simply dont seem to care about him from what i have seen..

BFG9000 site profile image  

6/21/14 3:09 PM by BFG9000

The UFC is neck and neck with soccer globally - DFW

ender852 site profile image  

6/21/14 2:43 PM by ender852

they said this shit three years ago before the fox deal.it wasn't true then, it's not true now, and i doubt it ever will be true.

eljamaiquino site profile image  

6/21/14 9:04 AM by eljamaiquino

Anderson Silva and GSP ARE still the biggest names in the UFC. There are very few current champs like them. You don't get that sense of excitement and uncertainty from anyone else, except maybe Rousey and Pettis. But Pettis can't stay healthy and Rhonda will always have to bear being a female.

Gunter Vogler site profile image  

6/21/14 8:32 AM by Gunter Vogler

Doubting he'll have that kind of run. The guys at heavyweight are way too dangerous with one strike finishing power compared to welterweight.Cain will never be able to consistently fight safe/decision dominate for 5 rounds like GSP did if he can't put someone away.Someone, most likely a very significantly inferior fighter, will catch him again at heavyweight at some point.Just like Junior did. Heavyweights are so much more dangerous than welterweights even if you're completely dominating them and are 10x the fighter they are.I think Cain will get Serra'd again whether he continues to fight like the buzzsaw he is or morphs into "Just win, baby" GSP at some point.

Toquinho site profile image  

6/21/14 8:16 AM by Toquinho

Ragdoll? That fight was horrible. I expected domination stand up and gnp from gsp but he lnpd diaz very calculated. I want to see gsp come back like a hungry assassin