Cory Sandhagen (12-1) is ready to take the bantamweight crown whenever Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is ready to offer it. He won a clear unanimous decision over Raphael Asssuncao (27-7) at UFC 241 on Saturday. He then told media after the fight that he is Bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo’s Kryptonite.
“I’m getting better every single day. Whenever UFC wants to give me the belt, I said I’ll take it. I know we’re living in the age of money fights,” he said. “I think that everyone else in the bantamweight division is bringing the same thing every single fight. I’m someone that's different. I think Cejudo is very, very good. I don’t think anyone else in the bantamweight division is going to be able to beat him except for myself.”
Sandhagen often talks about the mental aspect and self-journey of mixed martial arts. He says that mental strength was developed after his first (and only) professional loss in 2017.
“When I lost my first fight, it wasn’t because the guy was better than me. It was because I was in the cage and I broke,” he said. “I looked at myself in the mirror after that loss and I looked myself in the eyes and I was like, ‘man, you punked out.’ I know that I’m not a punk and I know I don’t train like a punk, but I punked out in that fight that I loss. I never wanted to feel that way again.”
He has since found and “killed” the root of the problem. “I’ve also been seeing a sports coach for about three years and that’s helped a lot.”
Having beaten the No. 3-ranked Asssuncao, Sandhagen can likely expect a Top 5 opponent in his next fight.