Henry Cejudo announced his retirement from the sport after defending the UFC bantamweight title against Dominick Cruz in 2020 but makes his return to the cage 1097 days later to attempt to re-claim what was once his at UFC 288 on May 6.
Pedro Munhoz, a veteran of 18 octagon appearances who faces Chris Gutierrez at the upcoming UFC Kansas City show on April 15, doesn’t see much sense in granting Cejudo a shot at the gold after such a long period of inactivity.
“With Henry Cejudo and all that time away, retired, to return for the belt, there’s no logic in that. There’s no logic whatsoever,” Munhoz said on a recent episode of Trocação Franca podcast. “I know he was the [flyweight] champion and then bantamweight champion so apparently it’s a fight that sells, apparently both guys have big influence in the organization.”
“It would make more sense to me to be Sean O’Malley — even though many people disagreed with the judges on his fight against Petr Yan, he won and Petr was the No. 1. So it would make more sense for Sean to fight Aljamain Sterling, but Henry Cejudo entering [the picture] doesn’t make much sense in my opinion. It doesn’t make much sense for him to come back and already fight for the belt.”
Munhoz, who lost a decision to Sterling on the night Cejudo won the 135-pound belt in 2019, disagrees with UFC’s call but “won’t waste my time and energy” with something that doesn’t concern him.
In the end, he expects Sterling to beat Cejudo in Newark, NJ.
“I think Henry Cejudo and all that time away, out of shape, that could make the big difference after three rounds. I see Aljamain Sterling as the strong favorite,” Munhoz said. “I think Sterling is physically strong and is in great shape. He’s not one of my favorite fighters to watch, his strategy isn’t very pleasing to my eyes. Nothing against him as a person, but the way he fights is a bit different from how I fight. [But] it’s working for him, he’s the champion.”