Despite many believing he has more than earned a title shot, Alexander Volkanovski will have to wait.
Should UFC flyweight and bantamweight champion Henry Cejudo get his way, Volkanovski could find himself waiting even longer. Cejudo teased a potential jump up to 145 pounds after his 135-pound title victory over Marlon Moraes at UFC 238. Speaking to Submission Radio recently, Volkanovski warned “Triple C” to “stay in your lane”:
“Stay in your lane, Henry, come on mate. Honestly, what he’s done is unbelievable. It was good on him. I actually picked him to win. I didn’t expect him to have so many problems earlier. I knew the guy was powerful. Maybe the ankle was why was he was sort of cowering to the kicks a little bit, if you know what I mean.
“He was sort of pretty flat-footed and I thought he would have done a little bit more on the outside to make it a little bit more difficult for someone like Moraes to just load up the kicks. But again, that could have been the ankle. So for him to overcome that and get it done, good on him. Him coming to 145, you know, again, you gotta be quick in this division, but we’re still quick and we’re just a whole another powerful type of beast.
“And we’re a stacked division, a lot of very tough guys in our division that I don’t think he’ll want any of that. But maybe he’ll give it a crack, maybe UFC will let him do it. But yeah, that will change quick.
Cejudo would certainly present some interesting matchups to the division. He is an Olympic gold medal wrestler and has improved drastically in the standup department over the years. As for Volkanovski, he hasn’t lost a professional mixed martial arts (MMA) bout since 2013 and is currently on a 17-fight win streak.
In his last outing, Volkanovski out-classed Jose Aldo in his native Brazil at UFC 237. Should he ever find himself standing opposite Cejudo inside the cage, Volkanovski is confident his takedown defense will hold up against the Olympian:
“Well, he ain’t gonna take me down. And if he does, I’m getting back up. And again, I got the cardio, and then again, I’m just gonna be too powerful. And again, I’m good on the outside. He’s gonna be a lot shorter than me.
“You see what I can use in my range, even with tall people, imagine what I could do to someone half my size. That will be interesting. But look man, again, he’s an athlete, he really is, he’s explosive, he still would be dangerous and quick, but at the same time, I just think he’ll have a puncher’s chance. But him being that light, I don’t think that’s likely.”