The UFC 267 co-main event between Petr Yan and Cory Sandhagen lived up to the hype and then some. In one of the more stacked fight cards of the year, it doesn’t come as much surprise that these two masters of their craft took home Fight of the Night.
As sweet as an extra “50 Gs” is for anybody, that’s not what Sandhagen came to Abu Dhabi to take back home. “The Sandman” was hoping to defeat former undisputed champion Petr Yan, whom many believe to be the best bantamweight in the company. If successful, he could arguably stake his own claim to being the #1 bantamweight in the UFC, if not the entire world.
In the end, as valiantly as he fought and as thrillingly as he performed, it was Petr Yan who had his hand raised and waist wrapped again bantamweight gold. After the loss, Sandhagen took to Instagram to share his fresh thoughts with his supporters.
“Tough sport. Hell of a fight, Yan. Learn. Get better. The ship keeps sailing. I’m gonna be champ one day.”
Despite losing two straight fights, Sandhagen’s long-term goal is certainly not out of reach. Coming into Saturday’s title bout as the #3-ranked bantamweight speaks to the trajectory this 29-year-old’s career is on and the promise that lies within his skill set. That said, now that he has lost to the top three bantamweights in the rankings, he will need to reassert himself once more. No matter who it is, after his last two classics, you can be sure the world will be watching.
Do you think Cory Sandhagen will be a UFC champion one day?