New UFC heavyweight champ Junior dos Santos has crushed the previously undefeated Cain Velasquez, amid rumors both men were dealing with serious injuries. Having seen how diminished Velasquez — pudgy, slow, tentative — appeared on his return from a year off for rotator cuff surgery, fans are right to worry that dos Santos won’t be the same when he returns from knee surgery for a torn meniscus.
While the division is certainly still strong, it’s dramatically diminished from its all-time peak a mere 20 months ago. In 2010 we had a superstar UFC champ that was universally feared. We had a still-undefeated legend ruling in Strikeforce. We had a bevy of up and coming prospects and a strong roster of formidable and well-known veterans. Today, not so much.