Henry Cejudo doesn’t need to prove himself to fight Alexander Volkanovski.
That’s according to Cejudo’s manager Ali Abdelaziz who was responding to recent comments from Volkanovski.
Shortly after Volkanovski successfully defended his featherweight title against the Korean Zombie at UFC 273 this past weekend, Cejudo declared he was returning to MMA.
He would even reenter the USADA drug testing pool as this time, talk of a return looks very serious.
What Volkanovski said
Of course, Cejudo’s main goal is to become the featherweight champion and the promotion’s first-ever three-division champion. However, Volkanovski believes he needs to prove himself in the featherweight division first.
“I don’t think [Cejudo] he deserves a title shot straight away,” Volkanovski said. “He’s been out of the game for a while, he’s retired. He was a bantamweight champion and a flyweight champion, which are great accomplishments. But it doesn’t mean he deserves it.”
“If there ever was a time to flirt with ideas like that, maybe it is now. But because we’re waiting to see who earns that No 1 spot. But I still think he’s in the same position as some of these contenders. They’re probably one fight away. I don’t think he needs a couple of fights. He just needs a feeling out featherweight fight – if he goes there and dominates he will get a title shot for sure.”
Ali Abdelaziz: Henry Cejudo Is A Bigger Fight Than Max Holloway
For Abdelaziz, that’s essentially nonsense.
According to the outspoken manager, Cejudo is a two-weight champion and an Olympic gold medalist who represents Volkanovski’s biggest fight available right now.
Even more so than a trilogy with Max Holloway.
“Is Henry serious about fighting? 100 percent,” Abdelaziz told ESPN. “Alexander, the 145-pound champ, I respect that man, I’m a huge fan. But today, Henry Cejudo is a two-division champion, Olympic gold medalist — you said he needs to prove himself in the division? It makes no sense. It’s a much bigger fight, you and Henry than Max [Holloway] and I love Max and I respect Max.
“Henry has been in the media than 95 percent of the fighters in the last two years. But how are you going to say that he needs to prove himself? He’s a two-division champion. And I’m not saying anything about Alexander — honestly, I love watching him, I’m a fan actually. But at the end of the day, Henry believes he can beat you. Simple.”
Given Cejudo’s credentials and name, Abdelaziz also believes a win over him should be something Volkanovski should be targeting to further establish his own legacy.
“You’re telling me him beating Korean Zombie on his record or Henry Cejudo. Which one is better?”
You can watch the full interview below: