Despite his impressive win streak, Henry Cejudo isn’t a different fighter according to former title challenger Joseph Benavidez.
UFC president Dana White recently revealed his plan was for Cejudo to defend his flyweight title next. Benavidez is the only challenger that makes sense at this point, and even holds a win over Cejudo.
That was back in 2016 when he outpointed “The Messenger” in a split decision win. Since then, Cejudo has gone on a five-fight winning streak which includes wins over Demetrious Johnson, TJ Dillashaw and Marlon Moraes.
However, Benavidez doesn’t think Cejudo has really changed his game compared to when they first fought:
“(He’s) not very different, honestly,” Benavidez told MMA Junkie. “His confidence has probably grown, because of what he’s accomplished. But it’s hard to say. He fought me really good. I fought DJ really good. … He just maybe executed a few little things better against DJ that probably wouldn’t work well on me.
“… He dominated (Sergio) Pettis and (Jussier) Formiga. He was really good when he fought me. He was really good in those fights. Just, the name he went and beat after that. Went and beat DJ. He’s really good, but I don’t think he looked different than he did in my fight. He looked really good in my fight, too. We just had a little more back-and-forth.
“Then he went and knocked out T.J. That was a thing. He got a good win, but it’s like, how did he look in that fight? We don’t know. He ended it in 30 seconds. Props to him.”
Even if Cejudo has improved, the same can be said for Benavidez. That is why he is confident of getting another win over the Olympian:
“I’ve gotten better, too,” Benavidez explained. “There was just little things, but I think 100 percent I can (beat him). That fight (the first bout), it was a stand-up war. He was basically trying to match volume for volume and clean strikes for clean strikes. We stayed in each other’s face, and no one really beats me at that game.
“So, yeah, I think I can beat him there. And then there’s even little adjustments that you can make to even make sure I beat him again.”
What do you think of Benavidez’s comments?