Thanks to his recent outings, TJ Dillashaw is widely considered to be one of the planet’s best pound-for-pound fighters, but it doesn’t sound like Dominick Cruz necessarily shares that opinion.

Dillashaw will defend the UFC’s bantamweight title against Cruz on January 17th, in what will mark the former champ’s first bout since last September, when he stopped Takeya Mizugaki. The 20-1 fighter went down with another knee injury after the bout, and as a result, Cruz has fought just once since 2011.

Recently Cruz spoke with La Aficion about the bantamweight division and Mr. Dillashaw, and here is some of what “The Dominator” had to say (quote via Bloody

“It’s pretty basic. The division, while we do have a lot of guys moving around, what’s really changed? The champion right now, has lost to two different people in the same division. One of them, finished him and was at 125, and that’s John Dodson.”

“That’s the champion at 135 right now. Got knocked out by Dodson. He’s very very beatable, and that’s been proven. You haven’t proven a lot of ways to beat me since 2007, when I was 21 years old, working 40 hours a week while I was training.”

Wow. Clearly Cruz isn’t going to ease up on the verbal sparring, even though Dillashaw has left Team Alpha Male…The 30 year-old has formed quite the rivalry with the Sacramento based gym, on account of his previous fights with TAM leader, Urijah Faber.

Now sure, Cruz is likely playing mind games here on some level, as it’s pretty hard to dismiss what Dillashaw has done since his loss to Raphael Assuncao. After all, Dillashaw take out Renan Barao twice, and has showcased a pretty dynamic striking game in his recent scraps.

The January 17th, Fight Night card will go down in Boston, Massachusetts. Dillashaw-Cruz is going to be one very, very interesting fight.