Just last week, it was announced that current Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw would drop down to the Flyweight division to challenge current titleholder Henry Cejudo at UFC 233 on Jan. 26, 2018 in Anaheim, California.
It was a interesting announcement given the fact that the promotion is in the process of dissolving the 125-pound weight class.
It makes no difference to Cejudo, as he says once he finishes Dillashaw at 125 pounds, he will go up to Bantamweight and take “Viper’s” belt, which isn’t good news for the rest of the 135-pound contenders.
“I truly know in my heart that this dude has never fought...I’m a different competitor, a different athlete, especially at 125 pounds. You are going up against an elite athlete, lose an additional 10 pounds, depleted. I don’t care how light you are, once you make the weight, how strong are you going to feel when you go up against a solid striker and a great wrestler,” asked Cejudo during a recent interview on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show.
“What’s going to happen once I beat him, all these guys at 135 pounds are all going to be down, and they will have to truly wait now,” he added. “When you lose 10 pounds you are in trouble man, He is helping me by going down to 125 pounds and then I am going to go up and beat him there, too. But first it’s going to set off on my terms.”
“I truly believe a lot of those guys at 135 deserve a title shot, but listen to what I am telling you. I am going to beat this man, I am going to stop this man, another one will bite the dust on January 26,” he added.
After revealing he recently inked a six-fight deal with UFC, Cejudo says it’s not out of the realm of possibility for him to be able to take his talents to ONE Championship to join Demetrious Johnson via loophole.
“I still feel there is a trilogy between Henry Cejudo and Demetrious and I see that playing out in the future,” said Henry while adding a time and location can’t be determined at this juncture. “I signed a six-fight deal, but I think everything changes once they dismiss the flyweight division if that’s going to be the plan. I would have to talk to Ali but I believe there is a free agency in there, possibly.”
“Well, I fight this fight, I beat T.J, and if they get rid of the division, I believe the contract is signed at 125 pounds, so there is room there, is what I am saying. I wouldn’t necessarily say (this is my last fight), I love UFC and I love being at home. I’m just saying that if the numbers aren’t played right, possibly, I would have to see the contract or what-not. But I like that people leaving only brings competition to UFC. This is good for us fighters. UFC may not want to hear it but Demetrious and Eddie Alvarez leaving, that gives us negotiations (power). It gives us more room.”
Still, Cejudo isn’t complaining about UFC pay, as he says the organization has always taken care of him throughout his run with the promotion. Turning down a possible eight figure contract, though, is hard to do.