Morning Report: Henry Cejudo’s manager expects ‘Triple C’ to fight this summer

Morning Report: Henry Cejudo’s manager expects ‘Triple C’ to fight this summer

Nine days ago, UFC bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo stopped Dominick Cruz to retain his title at UFC 249. Afterwards, Cejudo made a surprise announcement, retiring from the sport. The announcement was so unexpected that many suspected it was part of a larger negotiating tactic by Cejudo for more money from the UFC. If so, that strategy may have taken a hit as Cejudo’s manager recently revealed that he doesn’t think “Triple C” will actually hang up the gloves.

“First of all, people understand my relationship with Dana White and the UFC. I don’t talk about money publicly,” Ali Abdelaziz told TMZ Sports over the weekend. “I think Dana’s right: I think Henry’s been talking about retirement. Do I think Henry’s gonna retire? Absolutely not. I don’t think Henry’s gonna retire.”

“Khabib (Nurmagomedov, who Abdelaziz also represents) right? Every time he fights, ‘I think I’m done.’ Two weeks later, ‘Who do you think I should fight next?’ Right? These guys, they’re at their prime. Henry’s gonna be coming now in his prime. How you gonna retire in your prime, and the pay-per-view did so well, and you’ve gotta make some money? Could things be changed a little bit? Yes, of course. But at the end of the day, this is between us. It’s between me and Henry and the UFC. I don’t think the media should know about this stuff, because people’s egos get big.”

Cejudo has made his pay a point since winning the flyweight title from Demetrious Johnson in 2018. The Olympic gold medalist immediately began asking for big money fights from the UFC and adopted a much more outspoken persona in an effort to increase fan interest. But despite his continued success, Cejudo seemingly has still had issues generating the fan interest he would hope for, and as such, the Conor McGregor-style paydays have not been forthcoming from the UFC. McGregor himself has parlayed retirement talk into new deals with the UFC, and many suspect Cejudo was attempting to do the same.

And it could be working. Despite UFC President Dana White seemingly being okay with Cejudo’s retirement, Abdelaziz estimates the bantamweight champion could be back in action in just a few months.

“Henry’s got everybody on their knees right now,” Abdelaziz said. “I don’t think he’s gonna retire. You’re gonna see him fight by this summer. This is what I think.”

But if Cejudo does come back, who his opponent would be is difficult to say. Cejudo was previously set to face Jose Aldo at UFC 249 before the coronavirus pandemic put a stop to that, and there are no shortage of viable contenders in the 135 pound division, though pole position would seem to favor Petr Yan as Dana White declared he would be one half of the title bout to fill Cejudo’s would-be vacant title. But Cejudo has other ideas.

Speaking with Logan Paul last week, Cejudo said the one fight that could get him interested in coming back would be an opportunity to become the first ever three-division champion in UFC history.

“Honestly, if there’s one fight that really will wake me up, that would be worth it for me to be like, ‘Hey man, I’m willing to put my credentials on the line for somebody,’ it would be fighting Alexander Volkanovski at 145 pounds. Then I’d be C4.”

With all this smoke, it seems like Cejudo’s retirement may not be a retirement after all.

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VIDEO STEW

UFC on ESPN 8 Post Show.

Coffee Talk: Florida Fight Week.

UFC Post Fight Presser.

Kevin Randleman’s video package.

The UFC is featured prominently in this Last Week Tonight segment.

How good was Henry Cejudo?

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6th Round. Immediate post-fight reaction to UFC on ESPN 8.

Severe MMA. Discussing UFC on ESPN 8, judging in MMA, and the Hall of Fame.

SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE

Class.

View this post on Instagram

First let me thank @alistairovereem for sharing the octagon we me tonight… You’re a class act brother and a legend! Tonight wasn’t my night, but you best believe I will be back better! Thank to everyone for all your love and support can’t say it enough! We learn and grow! Baby girl… daddy loves you and I promise I will keep pushing! #ForeverAniah

A post shared by Walt Harris (@thebigticket205) on May 16, 2020 at 10:18pm PDT

Truth.

I won that fight @danawhite. Book me on the island, Arizona, apex wherever and I’ll carve up more of your girls. Ready to go next week.

— Angela Hill (@AngieOverkill) May 17, 2020

Disrepect.

I don’t lost the fight to the China men I lost to the judges tonight. All my hard work to the fuckin drain, I can’t believe this horse shit tonight

— Chito Vera (@chitoveraUFC) May 17, 2020

Pretty wild.

Alistair Overeem joins Aleksei Oleinik as the only other fighter to win in 4️⃣ different decades #UFCFL | BT Sport 1 HD pic.twitter.com/rqcrIefGPW

— UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) May 17, 2020

WTF, Anthony Smith.

Coward move on his part, in my opinion.

— Anthony Smith (@lionheartasmith) May 17, 2020

The man is Wolverine.

One week later #UFC pic.twitter.com/Bvxz8EdIsM

— Niko Price (@Nikohybridprice) May 17, 2020

Call out.

View this post on Instagram

Why don’t me & this fat cunt just fight on fight island to settle our differences? He’s only a fat mess & when I smash his jaw clean off I’m gonna raw dog his bird, Fuchken MuPPet !! @platinummikeperry

A post shared by @ darrentill2 on May 16, 2020 at 1:35pm PDT

Another call out.

No puedo creer que otra vez @RdosAnjosMMA está con miedo de pelear! Hoy hablé con @ufc y están esperando la confirmación de el … pic.twitter.com/M0IWWBTsLL

— Santiago Ponzinibbio (@SPonzinibbioMMA) May 16, 2020

Ponzinibbio, vai dar meia hora de rabo com relógio parado e larga de ser mentiroso https://t.co/qE00zI3K0P

— Rafael dos Anjos (@RdosAnjosMMA) May 16, 2020

Are you saying that you agree to fight me on June 6 or whenever you want at 170 pounds?

— Santiago Ponzinibbio (@SPonzinibbioMMA) May 17, 2020

Nobody offered this fight to me yet. I fight you anytime Santiago

— Rafael dos Anjos (@RdosAnjosMMA) May 18, 2020

On brand.

If y’all verify me I want a camo check mark.

— Bryce Mitchell (@ThugnastyMMA) May 18, 2020

FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

N/A.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Honestly, screw it – do Cejudo vs. Volkanovski. Volkano doesn’t need to rematch Max Holloway again immediately and it would be kind of cool to see if Cejudo could actually become a three-division champion.

Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.

EXIT POLL

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