Brandon ‘The Truth” Vera has been talking a big game for his entire mixed martial arts career. How big do you say? He proclaimed he would be the first person to hold the UFC Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight titles simultaneously after winning his UFC debut against Fabiano Scherner. Vera knocked out Justin Eilers and choked out Assuerio Silva en route to his one-minute decimation over former heavyweight champion Frank Mir.
Four victims bested with a boatload of trash spoken about each one, and he backed it up in devastating fashion. Vera was next in line for a title shot against then-champion Tim Sylvia. A roadblock in the form of contractual disputes with his management kept him out of the Octagon for a year which is a precious commodity of time no fighter wants to lose.
The Lloyd Irving trained fighter made his return at UFC 77 against Tim Sylvia, who is no longer the champion. Vera lost a unanimous decision, and it was clear he was too small for the division. Ignoring requests to move to light heavyweight, he was out-powered by Fabricio Werdum and was finished for the first time in his career. Vera finally moved down to light heavyweight, which brought lots of promise but produced less than stellar results. He still talks a lot of trash, but he hadn’t looked impressive since the Mir fight back in 2006.
Brandon Vera belongs nowhere near a main event, but a picky Shogun Rua had a particular type of combatant in mind when given the option to choose his opponent. The Brazilian turned down a fight with Glover Teixeira, citing no upside to beating a legit top contender that no one knows. Vera got the call because he has a name and matches up well stylistically with Rua, and is expected to be an easy win which many agree with.
No one knows better than Brandon Vera how important this fight is. He has been written off by most, and his verbal bravado has fallen on deaf ears. However, a new Vera has emerged. Instead of loading up the hype train, he is humble and talks about being grown-up and not training like he should have in previous fights. It sounds like the usual Tito Ortiz shtick, but what if it’s not? What if Brandon Vera is finally telling the truth? The honest reflection of one’s self can provide a personal awakening that can do wonders. Is it just more hype, or will the truth finally set him free? We will find out the answer on Fox.