By: Mike Bohn |
December 19, 2019 11:05 pm
Henry Cejudo wants to make something clear: According to the now-former UFC flyweight champion, he gave up the belt voluntarily.
“I am not being stripped,” Cejudo told MMA Junkie late Thursday night. “I am relinquishing my title. … ‘Triple C’ is relinquishing his title to these wannabe, so-called flyweight kingpins. That’s what’s going on. I’m relinquishing my belt. Being stripped is not what I’m doing. I’m relinquishing, and you can tell them all to bend the knee.”
As a result, the 125-pound division is poised to move on with a title fight of Joseph Benavidez vs. Deiveson Figueiredo targeted to headline UFC on ESPN+ 27 in February.
With the 135-pound belt still in his possession, Cejudo is close to making his return to the octagon. He has a bevy of potential challengers waiting in the wings, but first must finish rehabilitation on his injured shoulder, which required surgery following his title win over Marlon Moraes at UFC 238 in June.
Benavidez (28-5 MMA, 15-3 UFC) vs. Figueiredo (17-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) is being targeted to headline UFC on ESPN+ 27 on Feb. 29 at Chartway Arena in Norfolk, Va. The card will stream on ESPN+. Benavidez carries a three-fight winning streak into the bout, while Figueiredo has won two in a row.