Back in June at UFC 199, after having recaptured the title he never lost, Dominick Cruz squared off against longtime nemesis Urijah Faber.
That night Cruz would once again dip, dive, dodge and duck en-route to dominating “The California Kid” toward a lopsided unanimous decision. The beef between Cruz and Faber stretches beyond the two men however, as Cruz has regularly called out other members of what he declares “Team Alpha Fail” (of course, referring to Faber’s Team Alpha Male camp).
At the press conference following their clash, the trash talk between Cruz and Faber didn’t stop. Faber, well aware that his chances of taking on Cruz again are likely slim-to-none, pushed hard for his star pupil Cody “No Love” Garbrandt to be the man to dethrone the champion. At the time, Cruz was dismissive of the prospect of fighting…a prospect…as he claimed to be unaware of who Garbrandt was, a notion that seems a tad farfetched given Cruz’s status as champion, and frequent panelist for Fox.
Garbrandt at the time, was scheduled to face another exciting prospect, Brazilian sensation Thomas Almeida. If you are unaware, Garbrandt promptly wrecked his foe, much the way he has his other opponents (9 wins, 8 T/KO’s). The impressive victory thrust Garbrandt into the top-10 of the always important (wink wink) UFC rankings.
Having defeated the #1 and #2 ranked bantamweights (T.J. Dillashaw, Faber) is now looking for his next opponent, and has apparently set his sights on Garbrandt after all. Cruz elaborated on his views with MMAJunkie Radio, throwing a considerable amount of shade at the 25-year old.
For the UFC, this is a matchup that makes perfect sense. While there is certainly a justifiable case to grant Dillashaw his rematch, it makes far too much sense for nearly everyone involved to see Garbrandt and Cruz face off. Okay, maybe it doesn’t make sense for Dillashaw and his people, but hey, them’s the breaks. As Cruz alluded to, the trash talk has already energized the fanbase, as well as both fighters.
Should Garbrandt get past the durable veteran Takeya Mizugaki at UFC 202 on August 20, expect “No Love” to air out his grievances with the champ to Joe Rogan during the post-fight interview, and for all of our sake, let’s hope this fight gets made. With another win, it only makes sense (and the dollars aren’t going to hurt either).