Demetrious Johnson says Cejudo has to win a few at featherweight before possible Volkanovski fight

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MMA champion and wrestling Olympic gold medalist Henry Cejudo, who lived much of his life in Phoenix, speaks while campaigning for Donald Trump, at the Latinos for Trump south Phoenix field office on Sept. 23, 2020.

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UFC legend and current ONE Championship star Demetrious Johnson thinks Henry Cejudo could do well in a fight against featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski. However, before he was to get a chance at becoming a three-division champion, “Mighty Mouse” thinks his former foe needs to win a few fights at 145-pounds first.

Following Volkanovski’s (23-1) successful UFC 266 title defense against Brian Ortega last month, retired star Cejudo (16-2) called for a fight with the Aussie champion. Telling ESPN that he felt winning a third title belt was a very attainable goal, as well as his reasons for being able to jump the contender line into a title shot at a weight class he’s never fought at.

Demetrious Johnson says Henry Cejudo should win a few at 145 before title fight against Alexander Volkanovski

“I believe I am entitled to skip the whole damn line. And you know why? Because I deserve it,” Cejudo said. “I defended my flyweight belt against Demetrious Johnson. I beat TJ Dillashaw, I went up [and] knocked out Marlon Moraes and I defended against Dominick Cruz. The greatest bantamweight of all time. And they’re still gonna doubt me?”

Although there haven’t been any indications that the UFC would be willing to make the matchup, ONE flyweight Grand Prix champion Johnson (30-4) thinks “Triple C” would do great in a possible fight versus “The Great.” However, as he told this week, that fight should only happen once Cejudo wins a few fights in the division first.

“I think he will do great. Volkanovski is not like a big dude, height-wise or reach-wise. I think he will do fine. Henry Cejudo is pretty thick right now, so I think it would be fine,” Johnson said. “The biggest thing, in my opinion, is if Henry wants to fight him, like he’s still in the UFC, so just work your way up to him. But, he just wants to have that one-off fight to fight him. If he does want to fight him, go and get two or three fights in the featherweight division, get in line as everybody else does, and earn your shot.”

Johnson does have a past with Cejudo. Having fought the Olympic gold medalist twice and split those matchups. The last of which Johnson lost by split-decision, and ended his years-long reign as flyweight king in 2018.

This line of thinking is not unfamiliar from the flyweight great. After TJ Dillashaw won the bantamweight title for a second time, he pushed for a title bout with Johnson at 125-pounds. At that time, Johnson suggested Dillashaw should prove he can make the weight first by competing in a title eliminator fight before jumping into an immediate title shot. So, the idea of proving oneself before championship fights in other weight classes is not uncommon from Johnson.

Cejudo has not fought since defending his bantamweight title against Dominick Cruz in May of 2020. He retired from the UFC holding both the 135 and 125-pound titles.

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