Cage Warriors featherweight champion Dean Trueman isn’t ecstatic about how his first title defense against former lightweight champion Soren Bak has come together, but he is adamant that he will not allow the Danish wrestling ace to use him as a stepping-stone to secure a UFC contract.
Trueman clinched the title after winning the promotion’s featherweight tournament with a third-round stoppage of Aiden Lee in December. Although he thought he would be able to take some time off after his hectic 2018 schedule, he claims that Cage Warriors told him if he didn’t defend his title against Bak at Cage Warriors 103, the promotion would allow “True Viking” to compete for an interim title.
“[Cage Warriors] put the opportunity on the table and originally I was away; I was supposed to be away that weekend,” Trueman told Eurobash. “My management told [Cage Warriors] that I was away and they basically said, ‘If Dean doesn’t fight Soren, we’ll give him an interim belt’.
“I thought, ‘You know, that’s bollocks. I’ve just won it, so what’s the point in giving him an interim belt?’ I cancelled the weekend away so I could beat him up and have it done with.”
“Cancelling the holiday didn’t bother me, but the idea of giving him the interim belt riled me a little bit, I must admit,” he added. “It was a bit of a piss-take, but it’s also a bit of a motivator to get in the gym and put this guy away.”
In a recent appearance on Eurobash, Bak underlined his belief that claiming another divisional title would be a bigger statement to make with a view to signing for the UFC rather than defending his lightweight title, which led to his decision to take on Trueman.
As far as Trueman is concerned, Bak has made a big mistake.
“Vacating the belt was a stupid move because he’s just going to be beltless. It’s not like he can go back up and defend his belt. He’s going to fight me and then he’s going to have no belt at all,” he said.
Trueman furthered critiqued Bak’s ability, underlining his belief that his striking is well below the UFC standard.
“He’s got a good grappling game…I think his striking game is…eh…without sounding too bad…shocking,” he said.
“You’ve got to be on a certain level. They’ve got some horrible strikers in the UFC and his striking just wouldn’t match up with them and their wrestling would be better than his. He’d have no way out so he’d just get beat up. I can comfortably stand with people and comfortably wrestle with people. I think, stylistically, I’m not a good matchup for him.
“I’ll beat him up standing, I’ll make him work hard for every takedown he wants and I’ll punish him for it.”
Check out the latest episode of Eurobash. The Dean Trueman interview begins at 51:30.