Frankie Edgar may have missed out on the opportunity to challenge Henry Cejudo for the undisputed UFC bantamweight title next month, but “The Answer” isn’t beating himself up over it.
Edgar believes things may have actually played out for the best. With everything going in the world today and all of the other bantamweight contenders vying for their own respective title shots, maybe the timing just wasn’t right.
Instead, former UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz will get the nod against Cejudo next month on UFC’s proposed mega-card on May 9. Former UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo was originally scheduled to fight “Triple C,” but COVID-19 travel restrictions put a stop to that.
“I’m not too concerned, really,” Edgar told MMA Junkie. “I threw my name in it. I really haven’t been able to train much because this is going on, so it’s probably for the best that it didn’t go my way.
“Dominick Cruz, he’s done a lot. He’s probably the most dominant bantamweight to date in the UFC. What he’s done in his career, I don’t see any problem with him getting a title shot. I know some other guys probably wish it was them, but in the circumstances, I wonder how many people really would take that fight anyway.”
Edgar isn’t the first fighter to have this outlook on Cruz’s unlikely title shot. Remember, “Dominator” hasn’t won a UFC fight since 2016. He’s been sidelined the past three years due to multiple injuries, yet remains one of the best 135-pound fighters of all time.
Despite getting passed over for Cruz, Edgar doesn’t regret throwing his name in the mix for the short-notice title fight.
“Whenever there’s a title fight on the line, you’ve got to put yourself out there, and that’s what I did,” Edgar said. “I didn’t know how realistic it was to get that and whatnot. Henry likes to sit there and play games and do all that stuff; I’m not that guy. I said what I had to say to put my name in the mix, but I’m not going to sit there and have a Twitter battle with this guy.
“I can play the game a little bit, too, but I’m not going to stay and go back and forth. I may smack him in person or something more so.”
Edgar, 38, was expected to make his bantamweight debut this past January in a clash with rising contender Cory Sandhagen. But after an injured Brian Ortega was removed from his featherweight clash with “Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung at UFC Busan in December, Edgar stepped up on short notice. He ended up losing to “Korean Zombie” via first-round TKO (see it HERE).
With all of these short-notice fights behind him, Edgar is now looking to make his awaited bantamweight debt this June. Edgar would likely face anybody UFC threw his way, but the former champion would prefer to challenge surging contender Aljamain Sterling in his first divisional clash.
“Aljamain’s been saying nobody wants to fight him or this and that,” Edgar said. “That’s the guy we were supposed to fight on this past card in November. That was a possibility, and it never came about. I believe he had to get surgery. So, that would make sense for me – come back and fight Aljamain in June. I don’t know what his plans are or what he has lined up, but someone along that line I think would be ideal.”
What say you, Maniacs? Does Edgar vs. Sterling make sense? If not, who should Edgar fight in his bantamweight debut?
Let’s hear it!