Dominick Cruz has made it pretty clear he wants to fight for the UFC’s 135 belt in his next outing, but who will the former champ face? That’s the question.
Cruz lost the title to Cody Garbrandt in December, as “No Love” out struck the renowned fighter for the unanimous decision win. Although Garbrandt’s first title defense doesn’t have an official date yet, he’s going to face former champ and teammate, TJ Dillashaw.
Recently Cruz’s head coach, Eric Del Fierro, was a guest on MMA Junkie Radio. During the interview, Del Fierro reported that Cruz continues to heal up from the plantar fasciitis he’s been battling, and that he still intends to fight for the belt in his next scrap.
Del Fierro was also asked for his take on who Cruz will face, if indeed, the UFC grants him an immediate shot at the belt. Here is what the highly respected coach had to say (quote via MMA Junkie):
“I think Cody’s slick,” Del Fierro said. “He’s slick, and I think what he showed is a lot of composure. I think he’s got a lot more that he hasn’t shown. Rematches are always difficult, and teammates fighting teammates is a whole different level of mental battle, so the question is who can put it aside more than the other and I would kind of give that edge to Cody – but I don’t know.”
That’s an interesting take on it. Dillashaw appeared to be very emotionally invested in his bout with Cruz last year, and ended up losing that fight by split decision. Cruz also appeared to rile up Garbrandt on more than one occasion, before they fought, but clearly that didn’t play a role in the outcome.