The UFC flyweight champion Henry Cejudo has claimed that he was aware of rumours surrounding his rival TJ Dillashaw prior to facing him in Brooklyn.
The 135lb champion failed in his pursuit of another title when Cejudo beat him in 32 seconds at UFC Brooklyn at the start of the year.
In the time since, Dillashaw has, of course, relinquished his hold on the UFC bantamweight title following his positive test for the banned substance EPO in the aftermath of his showdown with the former Olympian.
Speaking in a recent interview with MMA Junkie, Cejudo explained his thoughts on his rival’s recent two-year ban from competition.
“I’ve heard TJ, and I really never brought it up, he was on supposedly in the days prior to USADA, even Cody (Garbrandt), himself, was like, ‘Hey, watch out dude, he’s dirty.
“People would come up to me, and I never really brought it up because I thought that that part of MMA is over, but I think once you find out he’s on it, it’s like, this dude ain’t playing fair.
“He didn’t touch my face, nothing happened on my part, but maybe some other people were victims to his wrath. But that’s for USADA and the UFC to research everything.
“I’ll never fight him again. And it’s not because I’m scared. I shook his hand. This is a sport, this isn’t baseball. You’re not hitting a baseball, it’s another human being. I want no part of him. Doesn’t matter what they’re going to offer me or what they’re going to give me, in my eyes, TJ, there was bad intentions in there. There’s no desire for me to want the fight. I’ve always been drug-free.
“The dude could have beat me up, the dude could have really hurt me.”
Cejudo will now fight to become the fourth dual-weight world champion in the history of the UFC as he steps up in weight to take on surging contender Marlon Moraes for the vacant UFC bantamweight title at UFC 238.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena