clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Dana White: Henry Cejudo needs to defend flyweight title next or give up the belt

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Henry Cejudo needs to defend the flyweight title in his next fight or he won’t be able to call himself ‘Triple C’ any longer.

The reigning two-division UFC champion is currently in recovery after undergoing shoulder surgery following his TKO against Marlon Moraes that earned him the bantamweight title back in June.

Lately, Cejudo has been calling for fights against just about everybody including former featherweight champion Jose Aldo, former bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz as well as Urijah Faber, who just recently returned from a three-year retirement from the sport.

One name that Cejudo hasn’t mentioned, however, is top ranked flyweight contender Joseph Benavidez and that is exactly who the UFC wants him to face when he’s healthy again.

“Right now, we have some things playing out at 135 pounds. What we’d like to see Cejudo do is defend his title against [Joseph] Benavidez,” UFC president Dana White said on Tuesday night following the latest installment of the Contender Series. “Benavidez is ready.

“It’s the right thing to do. If he can’t, then he needs to give up one of the belts.”

Cejudo dubbed himself ‘Triple C’ after claiming championships at both bantamweight and flyweight, which complimented the gold medal he won at the 2008 Olympics.

He’s continued calling himself by that nickname ever since but if Cejudo wants to maintain his triple championship status, he’s going to have to face the last fighter to hand him a defeat or risk one of his belts being stripped away.

Cejudo last defended the flyweight belt back in January when he demolished T.J. Dillashaw in just 32 seconds.

“He needs to defend that [flyweight] title,” White said. “First of all, we’re playing some things out to see who’s going to be the next challenger at 35.

“Benavidez is ready to go. He deserves it and he’s got a win over Cejudo.”

Benavidez has been calling for the flyweight title shot ever since Cejudo won the belt with a victory against former champion Demetrious Johnson.

Most recently, Benavidez dispatched Jussier Formiga by second-round TKO to bring his current winning streak to four with a 9-1 record overall in his past 10 fights.

Now it looks like Benavidez is going to get his shot at flyweight gold one way or another as he awaits word from Cejudo once he’s healthy enough to fight again.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the MMA Fighting Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your fighting news from MMA Fighting