As noted, it was confirmed this weekend that UFC heavyweight Cain Velasquez is currently in talks with WWE, and is also interested in possibly working with AEW or New Japan Pro Wrestling. He has had talks with these three promotions, and AAA.
Velasquez previously defeated Lesnar to win the UFC Heavyweight Title at UFC 21 in 2010.
It was noted by WWE sources that the 37 year old Velasquez would likely undergo knee surgery before he made any long-term commitment to any pro wrestling promotion.
Velasquez, who worked out at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando last year, made his pro wrestling debut for AAA back in August, and worked a second match in September. He reportedly enjoyed his matches with AAA, where he's performed as a high-flying luchador, performing acrobatic moves while wearing a mask. WWE sources also noted that the company is not interested in using Velasquez as a high-flyer. WWE would likely want to present Velasquez as a serious fighter, one who can be a legitimate rival to Lesnar.
It's believed that in the long run, AAA wouldn't be able to afford Cain if he wanted to make a real career in pro wrestling because their pay scale is much lower than in WWE.
It was also noted that WWE wants exclusivity with Velasquez, as they do with other talents. AAA and AAA do have a working relationship, and Velasquez teamed with AEW Executive Vice President Cody Rhodes back in August. Meltzer noted that a potential AEW deal would allow Cain to continue working in Mexico, where he is a huge star due to his UFC fame.
Velasquez remains under contract to UFC for several more fights. His UFC deal did allow for him to do the AAA matches, but UFC would not allow Cain to do anything physical for a Pro Wrestling Revolution event coming up this weekend. PWR is the company that helped train Cain.
We noted earlier this month how Cain spoke to ESPN and was asked if a run with AEW or WWE appeals to him. He said AEW seems to be on the path that he's more interested in.
"I love them both," Cain said of AEW and WWE. "I think obviously WWE is the powerhouse. They've had the biggest stars come from there and it's the most watched wrestling in the U.S. for sure. I love the backstories and the drama, but their wrestling to me -- I like more of the lucha stuff. I like the athleticism, and we do see some in WWE, but as far as wrestling goes, it's not my favorite organization just as far as the wrestling. I think AEW is doing some great stuff. I like the talent that they've brought in. They have a mix of lucha, which I think is pretty cool, and something fans are really liking these days. They're doing a great job in giving the fans what they want as far as the wrestling and I love that they're doing that. I like them both for what they are, but I love the way AEW is going, the path they are going. I see big things for them in the future. ... If I can, I'd love to do something with them."
Stay tuned for updates on Cain's pro wrestling future.