The UFC has attempted to crack into the Hispanic demographic for awhile, hoping to draw some of combat sport’s most passionate fans to Mixed Martial Arts. Aiding the cause has been heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez whose family hails from Mexico and, as far as Velasquez is concerned, the campaign has been working.
Velasquez relayed a story to UFC 360 Magazine about a promotional appearance he recently made where the enthusiasm of the crowd that showed up was evident.
“It was crazy. They didn’t really publicize the event too much, so the turnout was a surprise to everybody,” recounted Velasquez. “We didn’t have enough security. It was in the downstairs of a Macy’s. I was between two escalators, so my back was against a wall. The signing was supposed to go for two hours and it lasted five minutes. People started pushing and getting a little crazy, so we had to cut it. I ended up signing 2,000 autograph cards and had them sent down to Mexico City so people could get one.”
The 30-year old went on to explain he occasionally has a tough time staying under the radar in Mexico even when he’s not there for official business.
“Yeah, it depends on where we go. One time I had to put on a disguise and go out the back,” said Velasquez.
While the UFC has yet to hold an event in Mexico it is expected to take place sooner than later. Currently a season of TUF: Mexico is in the works. Based on his comments, Velasquez appears likely to be play a significant role in at least one of the endeavors if not both.
PHOTO CREDIT – MMAWEEKLY