Henry Cejudo believes he has made his case to be the UFC flyweight division’s No. 1 contender.
The Olympic gold medalist earned his third straight 125-pound victory at UFC Fight Night in Monterrey on Saturday night, as he captured a unanimous decision triumph over grappling ace Jussier da Silva.
While Cejudo was not especially dominant, he was more active than his opponent throughout the contest, beating him to the punch on the feet and staying active in the clinch. “Formiga,” meanwhile, was never able to put his vaunted submission skills on display.
“I was just actually cautious with him,” Cejudo said during a post-fight interview. “I knew he likes to take the back… The whole plan was to keep it on the feet with him, and that’s exactly what we did. I hurt him throughout the clinch. He came prepared. He kicked me pretty hard. I felt like he broke part of my bone [on my shin], but everything else is good.”
In improving to 10-0 in his still-young MMA career, Cejudo earned the most significant victory of his professional tenure. With many of the top contenders in the division having already tried and failed — some on multiple occasions — against “Mighty Mouse,” Cejudo feels that he is the next logical opponent for the reigning champion.
“Absolutely. I think Demetrious is somebody that I want to display every art that I have, and I haven’t really [done that] in the UFC,” Cejudo said. “I’ve just been standing up with guys. But I think with somebody of his caliber I’m going to use every tool and weapon that I have.
“And I do believe I’m the next in line to get the shot. I mean, who else is next?”
Johnson recently expressed a desire to defend his crown at UFC 196 in Las Vegas on Feb. 6. While Cejudo previously stated he would boycott fighting in Sin City as a result of the harsh punishment levied against Nick Diaz by the Nevada Athletic Commission, he softened his stance during Saturday’s post-fight press conference, in part because Diaz’s five-year suspension and $165,000 fine for testing positive for marijuana at UFC 183 will likely be reduced sometime in the near future.