At UFC 274 earlier this month, Ferguson’s torrid run of form continued. Having entered 2020 riding a 12-fight win streak and with a title shot secured, the fan favorite has since lost four consecutive Octagon outings.
After dropping an interim championship opportunity to Justin Gaethje via TKO, “El Cucuy” fell to defeat on the scorecards against Charles Oliveira and Beneil Dariush. While he’d hoped to snap that skid on May 7 in Jacksonville, Michael Chandler left him unconscious in the second round courtesy of a truly vicious front kick.
But despite the devastating loss, Ferguson hasn’t appeared at all disheartened or demotivated since, and is already looking ahead to his return. When he does step inside the cage again, he’s insisted that it’ll be on his terms.
During a recent appearance on The MMA Hour, Ferguson, who has made his willingness to return to welterweight known, claimed that the UFC president had made him “feel like sh*t” in the past, largely in regards to a weight switch.
Now, Ferguson says he won’t let anyone make him feel like that again, not the commentary team, the fans, or Dana White.
“I have nothing against going up a weight class. For a long time, Dana made me feel like sh*t for going up a weight,” revealed Ferguson. “But he made me feel like sh*t for a long time, and when you have people making you feel like sh*t like that, essentially you start to almost believe it.
“I’m not standing here giving him the finger, but I’m kinda sitting here like, I’m gonna do me for me now, and you’re gonna watch me now. I’m not tryna be unhappy anymore, because I just can’t do that sh*t anymore,” added Ferguson. “I’m not gonna let commentary or people have that fault and throw it in my sh*t. I do that myself, and I do it enough.”
Ferguson: When I Say I’ll Fight, I’ll Fight
With that strong stance in mind, Ferguson gave a stern response to White’s suggestion that he should take a lengthy period away from he cage following his KO loss at UFC 274.
According to the #10-ranked lightweight, he’s calling the shots now, and when he wants to fight and is ready to, he’ll be throwing down inside the Octagon.
“As far as a return, he says I’m gonna take some time off. Man, I call the shots,” asserted Ferguson. “Whenever I say I fight, they always give me a fight, and that’s how it goes… They know already. When I say I’m ready, I’m gonna be ready.”
While some have looked at Ferguson’s four-fight losing skid and the fashion of his latest loss to conclude that his time is nearly up in the sport, Ferguson clearly believes the opposite. He’ll look to prove that he can still compete at the highest level when he next enters the cage, a return he expects to come before the end of 2022.
Who would you like to see Tony Ferguson share the Octagon with next?