WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — Dominick Cruz told ESPN recently that he’s interested in moving up to featherweight to face Jose Aldo or Conor McGregor. That’s a trend lately in the UFC, champions wanting big money fights rather than facing top contenders in their respective divisions.
Cody Garbrandt, though, doesn’t think Cruz is eyeing one of those names solely for money. Garbrandt, one of the top up-and-coming fighters in the bantamweight division, thinks Cruz is looking for an exit before the two have a chance to meet in the Octagon.
“In his defense, he goes and fights me, he loses everything,” Garbrandt said Monday at a media lunch here. “He loses the legacy he built as the bantamweight champion. He’s beaten every bantamweight. He’s beaten every Alpha Male that he’s fought. But I’m a different Alpha Male than he has faced.”
Cruz returned from fighting just once in five years due to injury to beat T.J. Dillashaw, Garbrandt’s former Team Alpha Male teammate, to win the bantamweight title via split decision back in January. Cruz beat Urijah Faber, patriarch of the gym, by unanimous decision at UFC 199 in June.
Garbrandt believes he should be next up. The Ohio native thinks that if he beats Takeya Mizugaki in impressive fashion at UFC 202 on Saturday in Las Vegas, a title shot should be in the bag. On top of that, Cruz has began changing his tune and saying he wants to fight Garbrandt because of that Team Alpha Male storyline.
“The fans are behind it,” Garbrandt said. “He’s asking for it. i think that’s a fight that needs to happen after Takeya on Saturday.”
Garbrandt (9-0) said he has a hit list following the Mizugaki fight: Cruz, Dillashaw and then John Lineker, the man he was supposed to ….View full article
Source:: mma fighting