Former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez will be in an unfamiliar position when he steps inside the Octagon to face Antonio Silva on May 26 at UFC 146.

Velasquez is coming off his first career MMA defeat, as Junior dos Santos claimed the UFC belt from him last year. Now, the ex-Arizona State University wrestling standout is gearing up for another test in the division.

Silva, also known as “Big Foot,” is as formidable of foe as they come. He’s defeated Fedor Emelianenko and makes it a challenge because of his size.

“He is a big guy and has a lot of power in his hands,” said Velasquez, during a recent edition of “UFC Tonight.” “He is a guy who mixes up everything really well. He is not just a boxer, he is good on the ground, (and) he is a guy who is durable. I have seen his last fights and he doesn’t really get tired out there, so he is going to be in it the whole fight.”

Velasquez said he is 100 percent and has, “picked up the pace,” in training over the last few weeks. He added, “I’m definitely looking forward to this fight.”

While nothing has been confirmed, it is possible that the winner of Velasquez-Silva takes a giant step in the direction of becoming a challenger to the winner of dos Santos-Frank Mir for the belt. That fight will be the main event of the card.