I’ll take another of Sterling’s leftovers – Top bantamweight calls for Henry Cejudo

Henry Cejudo is looking at a quick turnaround following his loss at UFC 288. And there's a fighter all set to give it to him.

By: Lucas Rezende | 10 months
I’ll take another of Sterling’s leftovers – Top bantamweight calls for Henry Cejudo
May 5, 2023, Morristown, NJ, Morristown, NJ, United States: Morristown, NJ - May 5: Henry Cejudo steps on the scale for the official weigh-ins at UFC288 - Sterling vs Cejudo at Hyatt Regency on May 5, 2023 in Morristown, NJ Morristown, NJ United States - ZUMAp175 20230505_zsa_p175_055 Copyright: xLouisxGrassex

Fresh off a split decision loss to bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling at UFC 288, former UFC double title-holder Henry Cejudo is not too eager on going back to retirement just yet. Though ‘Triple C’ came up short against the ‘Funkmaster’ last Saturday, he has now set his sights on one of Aljo’s teammates: fellow wrestler Merab Dvalishvili.

Henry Cejudo now wants Merab Dvalishvili

On his official Twitter account, Cejudo called out Dvalishivili for his next outing, while tagging UFC president Dana White in the post, too. Merab was quick to respond and accept the challenge on his personal profile in rather provocative manner.

Cejudo’s original post also had the hashtag #UFCBoston, which hints at the potential matchup taking place at the upcoming August 19 card, set to take place in the city. UFC commentator Jon Anik himself confirmed the date and location during last weekend’s broadcast.

Brandon Moreno also called out Henry Cejudo

While Cejudo is trying to get a fight against Dvalishvili, there is another UFC champion looking to take on the ‘Messenger’ next. On his official Instagram account, flyweight champ Brandon Moreno asked Henry not to retire yet, while calling him out for a match in Mexico City.

“Don’t retire yet, please wait for me, I’m going to win my fight in July and then we can finish business, main event in Mexico City, I go to 135 lbs, fuck belts, just you and me in the Octagon.” Moreno wrote.

At the UFC 288 post-fight scrum, Cejudo was quick to respond to Moreno’s callout. Though Henry is not willing to take the fight to Mexico, the former double champion did not turn down the matchup entirely. Putting it simply, Triple C said he would take the fight for the right amount of money.

“I guess we’ll talk about it. Money talks,” he told the media during the post-fight scrum. “If the UFC wants to put it together, and there’s a nice little budget for both of us. I ain’t doing it in Mexico, though. Hell no. We can do it here in America or something like that.”

“We were friends at one point. He even lived with me for a minute.” Cejudo said “Got him on the Ultimate Fighter show, that didn’t work out.  He ended up training with Benavidez and we just became un-friends. But we were close at one point.” 

It is worth noting that before Moreno can actually face Cejudo, he will have to defend his title against Alexandre Pantoja in a title fight scheduled to take place at UFC 290, on July 8.

Can Cejudo break Merab’s nine-fight streak?

Henry Cejudo returned from retirement following a three-year hiatus. Before the split decision loss to Sterling at UFC 288, the 35-year-old was on a six-fight winning streak, with wins over Dominick Cruz, Marlon Moraes, T.J Dillashaw twice, Demetrious Johnson, Sergio Pettis and Wilson Reis. Prior to last Saturday, his latest loss took place in December 2016, when he dropped another split decision, but to Joseph Benavidez.

Meanwhile, Merab Dvalishvili (16-4) is tied with the champion for the longest win streak in the division at the moment, with nine straight victories. During this time, the 32-year-old defeated notable names at bantamweight, including former champion Petr Yan and featherweighr legend Jose Aldo, as well as former contender Marlon Moraes and John Dodson. The Georgian’s last loss took place in April 2018, when he got submitted by Ricky Simon.

Share this story

About the author
Lucas Rezende
Lucas Rezende

Lucas Rezende is a Brazilian journalist and writer from Belem, Para. He has been covering MMA since 2012 and contributing with Bloody Elbow since March 2015. When not writing, Lucas also teaches English. In his free time, he enjoys reading, slapping the bass guitar and traveling.

More from the author

Bloody Elbow Podcast
Related Stories