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Dominick Cruz: “I deserve to come back and get that title-shot.”

Dominick Cruz: “I deserve to come back and get that title-shot.”

In less than two months a grim anniversary will roll around, as October 1 will mark two years to the day since UFC bantamweight champ Dominick Cruz last took to the Octagon and defended his title. Cruz’s plight has been well-documented, taking time off to film a season of the Ultimate Fighter only to end up tearing his ACL during taping and suffer the same injury while rehabbing. And, unfortunately, it will still be another six months if not longer before Cruz is ready to make his return.

However, Cruz has learned to avoid looking too far down the road and is instead focused on each step of recovery as it comes to him.

“It’s very important I don’t overstep my boundaries with those eight weeks. I’m only looking eight weeks ahead. I’m not looking seven months ahead,” said Cruz in a revealing conversation with Inside MMA. “I have to be real with myself. I have to be real with everybody. I can’t come back too soon. I’ve already had double-ACL surgery. This isn’t a game. This is a serious business. This is my livelihood and my life.”

While Cruz’s extended absence from the cage will almost certainly create some ring rust, “The Dominator” isn’t looking to ease himself back into the division. As the linear champion, Cruz’s sights are set on a meeting with the interim title-holder who he expects to still be Renan Barao (30-1) when he’s cleared for competition.

“That’s who I want right off the bat. If nothing else, I deserve to come back and get that title-shot. I’ve defended the title 4X if you count WEC,” explained Cruz. “I think I’ve earned the right to be able to come back when I get this knee figured out and fight for the title.”

Lending weight to his belief, Cruz is 19-1 and on a ten-fight winning streak including success against Demetrious Johnson, Joseph Benavidez, Brian Bowles, Scott Jorgensen, and Urijah Faber.

The full interview with Cruz can be seen below:


  • AlphaOmega says:

    I really don’t see why they haven’t stripped him of the title and made Barao’s the real one instead of interim with how long he’s been out. Add in that Barao is about to tie him with title defenses, and it makes less sense to me.

  • MickeyC says:

    I agree. More than 18 momths with out a defense,they need to take it. I have no problem with him getting a title fight when he returns. But whats to say he will not have another set back. And odds are if there IS a third injury,I do mot see him returning at all.

  • AlphaOmega says:

    No a third injury I think does him in, I don’t think his knee will take being injured this close together especially since it’d be twice during the healing process.

  • SBERG says:

    Anyone he fights from this point foward is going to immediately go for a kneebar or something of that sort……Cruz is asking for trouble. I don’t see him being around long if at all….

  • AlphaOmega says:

    Yes SBERG if they were smart they’d just kick the living shit out of his knee the whole fight, kinda like how Mitrione did to Kimbo’s knees.


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