Urijah Faber has shifting views on a potential fight with former teammate T.J. Dillashaw.
‘The California Kid’ stormed out of retirement to knock out Ricky Simon in only 46 seconds at July 13’s UFC Sacramento. Afterward, he hinted he’s willing to face his onetime bro Dillashaw, who is currently suspended. Talk is swirling of a potential Henry Cejudo vs. Faber title bout. Somehow, Faber called a match-up with Dillashaw an even bigger fight.
But it seems he has changed his tune.
Speaking to Jose Youngs on MMA Fighting’s ‘A-Side Live Chat’ today, Faber said he doesn’t really want to fight Dillashaw. That’s because of what ‘The Viper’ puts in his body:
“I really don’t want to fight TJ. I mean, I really don’t. Especially, the odds are in his favor. He’s like a scientist when it comes to what he puts in his body. And I know that. Whatever he’s been doing, I’ve heard about it for years and I’ve never really delved into it. He’s also younger than me and he’s been training his butt off.”
Faber knows that the hatred and rivalry between him and Dillashaw would make for a great buildup. Yet he’s still more motivated to face Cejudo, whose accomplishments he believes are second to none:
“But I love a good fight. And the grit and the intensity and the focus is good on that one. But I’d rather test myself with the best. He’s done so while being clean as well, and it’s an opportunity for two legends of MMA to face one another:
“A guy that’s fair, a guy that’s accomplished a lot in the sport. No one has actually done what Henry’s ever done. He’s the youngest guy from America to get the gold medal. He beat some of the best fighters ever in Demetrious Johnson and TJ Dillashaw. He also has a win against Joseph Benavidez, who, in my opinion, is an uncrowned champion. Henry’s beat some very tough guys, and what an opportunity to go test yourself against a historic dude.
“And vice versa; that’s why he called me out.”
There’s no doubt a Cejudo vs. Faber match-up would be quite the scene, even if ‘The California Kid’ doesn’t deserve it from a pure rankings standpoint. Few UFC title fights seem to adhere to those loose standards anymore anyhow. Faber did say he’d be willing to forego his own shot to let his longtime friend Benavidez get a fight for Cejudo’s 125-pound title.
Unfortunately, Cejudo is out of action due to shoulder surgery. We won’t see him until the end of this year at the earliest. A lot could change by that time, so expect quite the amount of jockeying for position at the lower weight classes.
Should Faber get the shot at Cejudo – or does Benavidez finally get one more title fight?