Henry Cejudo was on Cloud 9 when he knocked out then-bantamweight titlist T.J. Dillashaw in 32 seconds to retain the flyweight championship. Cejudo expressed his joy to the sporting news;
“It was beautiful, I wasn’t supposed to go to the Olympics. I was ranked 31st in the world. I was down in every match. I still went out there and became the youngest in history ever to win an Olympic gold medal. It was the same thing with Demetrious Johnson (whom Cejudo defeated at UFC 227 to win the flyweight title). He had knocked me out in two minutes and 36 seconds and then having to wait 2 1/2 years to eventually get my rematch to avenge it against the greatest of all time. Next fight, I was fighting T.J. Dillashaw, the greatest bantamweight of all time, with the flyweight division on the line and knocked him out in 32 seconds.”
He was all set to moving back up to bantamweight and challenging Dillashaw for the title this summer. Henry Cejudo seemed to be on the brink of grabbing the opportunity to become the fourth fighter in UFC history to hold two titles simultaneously. Everything seemed to be working out for Cejudo.
But, unfortunate for Henry Cejudo it all didn’t look to fall in place when last month Dillashaw and the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) revealed the former had failed a drug test. This meant surrendering the belt for Dillashaw. It was announced on Tuesday that Dillashaw twice tested for positive EPO has to serve a suspension for two years.
Initially, the totality of the matter took a toll on the 32-year-old but Cejudo finally moved on and accepted it.
“For the whole day, I talked to my brother about it, the situation bothered me for about a day and a half. I felt sad. You go through these emotions. I’m a competitor, and I was playing by the rules. When somebody does something like that, there’s malice to it. It’s unfortunate because in baseball you are hitting a ball and going for the fences and watching the ball fly, but when it’s in fighting it’s completely different. I’m over it now. Things always come to light sooner or later. And T.J. got his.”
Henry Cejudo suspected Dillashaw and believes that people close to Dillashaw provided some clues about this in the recent past but he didn’t feel the need to speak about it in the public.
The last thing on Cejudo’s mind was, would he still want to square off with Dillashaw when he’s allowed to return?
Cejudo responded swiftly;
“I don’t think I’d ever fight T.J. again, I don’t believe in people taking PEDs. I don’t deal with people that do that stuff. I don’t like being around people that do that stuff. That’s just not me. Me fighting somebody like that again on it, I do believe in second chances, but not in a fight.”
It all remained bleak for a couple of days till the UFC intervened and came with the news that Henry Cejudo would still get a crack at history. He now has to face top contender Marlon Moraes for the vacant bantamweight crown in the main event of UFC 238 on June 8 at the United Center.
Moraes hold the record of winning 17 of his last 18 fights. He’s someone “The Messenger” has been watching for a while, and Cejudo knew that one day they would lock horns.
Henry Cejudo said;
“I knew me and Marlon were eventually going to fight, we both have the same manager and the same agent. I never try to become too friendly with people that I know I’m going to fight with because when I go out there, I’m coming with bad intentions in a legal way (laughs). I want to hurt him. I want to destroy him. I want to take his head off.”