Benavidez: “I’m Better Than Cejudo”
At UFC on ESPN 3, Joseph Benavidez returns to the Octagon to face off against Jussier Formiga in what can be considered a number one contender fight for the flyweight title.
And while the person who wins this fight could be next in-line for Henry Cejudo’s flyweight title, that does not mean they’re the next person to fight the fly/bantamweight champion.
Not only is Cejudo’s list of opponents doubled since his win a few weeks ago, but the “champ-champ” is out for the rest of the year following surgery.
“I beat him and that’s how I’m always looking at him,” Benavidez told MMA Fighting of his thoughts on Cejudo. “I’m better than him, I beat him, I pushed a pace on him and landed clean this clean that. I look at that so it’s motivating to see him do everything he can because that’s what I know of him.”
“Obviously he’s improved and his confidence has skyrocketed, and that’s a huge thing, so I’d be naive to think that he’s not different, that he hasn’t changed. But for me, he’s still the guy that I coached against in The Ultimate Fighter and my team beat his, and I beat him in the finale, and that’s how I look at him right now.”
“He just happens to be doing some others things too,” Benavidez said of Cejudo’s run to history. “Which is great and motivating within itself, but me personally, as a competitor, that’s how I look at him, as somebody I already beat, but knowing and not being naive to his improvements and everything he’s done.
“That should be his next fight,” Benavidez said of a rematch of their 2016 The Ultimate Fighter finale fight. “That’s the biggest challenge for him right now, that’s his only loss. He fought at bantamweight and even though there’s contenders, no one has a win over him, no one has history,” he added
“He should come avenge his loss, that’s the fight that makes the most sense in either of the divisions he’s champion. So that’s the plan: Win this fight and fight him when he’s healthy, pretty simple.”
Initial Report: MMA Fighting