Fabricio Werdum you are now Mexico’s adopted son. A country filled with an estimated 120 million combat sports fans has taken Werdum under their eagle wings. While the rest of the world rallied for Mark Hunt prior to UFC 180’s main event, the sold out crowd at the Arena Ciudad de México in Mexico City threw their affection and figurative roses at Werdum.
Backed by the folk mariachi sounds of Vargas de Tecalitlán’s “Cielito Lindo”, Werdum’s entrance into the arena went from a walkout to a religious experience once vocals hit speakers. Based on a Spanish copla from the 1800s, “Cielito Lindo” loosely translates to “Lovely Sweet One”. After a ringing endorsement from the Mexican fight community, Werdum is a made-man south of the border.
Book Werdum for your next Mexican wedding or Quinceañera and he will bring down the house on the microphone, in the DJ booth and on the dance floor.
Three weeks’ notice, 30 pounds to cut, and 12,000 feet of elevation to fight in were the biggest hurdles standing in the way of Hunt and perhaps his only crack at UFC gold. When life gives Hunt bad odds in life he burns them with fire. Sticking with the theme of picking melodic inspirational songs for his walkouts, Hunt went with Jesus Culture’s “Set a Fire” for his personal soundtrack.
With the MMA world on the edge of their asientos Hunt took round one from Werdum and even was ahead on points for the first half of round two. All Werdum needed was one lovely sweet strike to end the hopes of the Hunt fateful.
In traditional mariachi groups a minimum of 12-13 musicians are required to perform with at least six violinists in tow. When Werdum blasted Hunt with a perfectly timed knee to the skull it would lead to the Brazilian’s sixth career KO/TKO victory.
After Werdum is granted dual citizenship from Mexican political leaders his first title defense in 2015 will likely be versus Cain Velasquez. Hail to the new king, Salve al nuevo rey!
On the undercard of UFC 180 classic mariachi was represented strong while Mexican rock, hip and pop were left to collect dust. No Los Lobos, no Cypress Hill and no Selena to serenade your favorite fighters as they try to get in the zone before entering the cage.
Prior to the biggest win of his career welterweight Kelvin Gastelum filled the “Vicente Fernandez” quota for the night. Fernandez’s powerful voice is best known for leading the walkouts of Cain Velasquez, Erik Perez, and boxer Antonio Margarito. “El Palenque” translated to “The Arena” was Gastelum’s Fernandez anthem of choice.
After steamrolling Jake Ellenberger, Gastelum can call the Mexico City Arena in Mexico City his house. When you ring the doorbell at Gastelum’s house it plays the melody of a Vicente Fernandez song for several minutes. Pizza deliveries can get long and awkward at the Gastelum castle.
UFC 180 Walkout Songs
Fighter Artist Song Album Year
Fabricio Werdum: Vargas de Tecalitlán “Cielito Lindo” | La Más Completa Colección (2005)
Mark Hunt: Jesus Culture “Set a Fire” | Live From New York (2012)
Tommy Messano is a writer residing in Arizona who is best known for his work as a Mixed Martial Arts journalist. His work has been featured on a number of publications, including Cagesideseats.com, Sherdog.com, MiddleEasy.com, ESPN.com, the abandoned WCL.com as well as his own site, ULTMMA.com (R.I.P).