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Chael Sonnen slams UFC flyweights – ‘Henry Cejudo saved you, and you’ve shown nothing for it’

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Build Presents Chael Sonnen Discussing Bellator MMA Photo by Desiree Navarro/WireImage

After Henry Cejudo defeated Marlon Moraes to win the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Bantamweight title (see it), company president Dana White revealed the Flyweight division – the other weight class Henry rules over – would go on.

This, after months of speculation that the 125-pound division would be put out to pasture.

And just like that, several fighters who thought they were going to get the pink slip, or face a move up to 135 pounds to stay with the promotion, breathed a collective sigh of relief. And that’s pretty much all they did, according to Chael Sonnen, who says that not one fighter in the division has gone out to do his part to keep the train chugging along after getting a new lease on life.

“One thing at 125 pounds - and it does surprise me and it does disappoint me and it even infuriates me - listen, that division was almost cut,” Sonnen said on his YouTube channel (via MMA Fighting). “That division was almost gone. And I’m not speaking out of school, that was very public and well-known. Henry saved the division. Henry Cejudo brought something new where they said ‘You know what? We’re going to keep it around. We’re gonna keep this guy here and we’re gonna see if he can drive it into the future.’ The rest of the 125 pounders were so thankful. The holidays were saved, their careers were saved. [But they] did not apparently learn a single goddamn lesson from it almost being taken away from them,” he said.

Seemingly out of nowhere, the once-soft spoken Cejudo decided to run with the “King of Cringe” shtick, which has worked out pretty well for him. From taking props to staredowns, to challenging female champions to a fight, nothing seems to be off limits for “Triple C,” who also adopted the “bend the knee” catchphrase form “Game of Thrones.”

And while Chael doesn’t want every fighter to become a Cejudo or Colby Covington impersonator, he at least wants them to learn a bit from them and do their part to keep people’s interest in a division that hasn’t always had the best reputation. Even when it had the most dominant champion in UFC’s history – Demetrious Johnson -- at the helm, the division wasn't exactly a fan favorite.

“Aside from Henry Cejudo, not one of the guys in the back who thought their contracts were going to go away because of lack of interest in the division have done a god damn thing to be interesting,” Sonnen said. “Not one of them and it is infuriating to me. As much as they all wanted to cry into their beer when they were going to get cut — and I would take no pleasure in somebody having their opportunity taken from them, none — but you would certainly think that would serve as a wake-up call. A major wakeup call [that] something has to be done different,” he said.

“‘Oh my gosh, here’s Henry Cejudo. Oh my gosh, this guy looks like a fool, a jester. This guy’s coming on stage with fake snakes and snapping them down. Oh my gosh, this guy just saved an entire division? He just saved the jobs of 56 strangers who happen to be in the same weight class with the same goals as him? Wow. Maybe I should learn something.’”

How long the division sticks around after being given a second chance, remains to be seen. That said, Dana White did says Henry would have to defend the title in his next fight or be forced to give it up. Then it would be up to one of the two contenders who fight for the vacant strap to lead the charge.

And Sonnen, apparently, hasn’t seen anyone capable of doing so.