Henry Cejudo’s win over TJ Dillashaw is still being debated to this day.
Cejudo successfully defended his UFC Flyweight Championship against Dillashaw with a first-round TKO win in their champion vs. champion bout at UFC Fight Night 143 last month.
Some questioned whether it was an early stoppage with Dillashaw since criticizing the referee for robbing him of the chance to become a two-weight champion, while he also refuses to accept that he was beaten on the night.
Losses can happen
Matt Schnell (12-4), who is competing next month against Louis Smolka at UFC Fight Night 146, notably helped Cejudo train for Dillashaw, and is not a fan of the bantamweight king’s excuses.
“I think it’s really unbecoming,” he told John Hyon Ko of The Body Lock.
“I want to give this guy the benefit of the doubt but yeah, it’s very unbecoming. He should hold himself to a higher standard. We all know what’s at risk when we walk in there. You win, you lose. I’ve lost to guys that I think I’m way better than, I’ve beaten guys that are way better than me.”
“It’s just how it works shapes out sometimes. If you’re a competitor, a true competitor, and not just a guy who likes to win, then you know how to deal with this.”
Weight cut played a role
That said, even “Danger” did not expect Cejudo to get such a quick finish and believes the weight cut played in his favor.
“No, no I didn’t. I thought it was going to be a good fight. I saw Henry wearing on TJ a little bit. I questioned how durable TJ would be, the weight cut. I know, I’m a big flyweight, I’ve had bad cut[s] going in there and not been as durable so I just know how this stuff affects you. Yeah, it’s just 10 pounds [but] it’s not just about making the weight. How much time was he spending making sure that everything was right so that he can make the weight?”
“The time he was spending doing that was time he wasn’t doing things that he can enjoy. Spending time with his family, training on specific things, what have you, so I thought that was interesting.”
Looking down on the 125-pound division
But it wasn’t just the weight cut either — Schnell believes Dillashaw was bound to lose given how he was looking down on Cejudo and the 125-pound division heading into the fight.
“I also thought it was curious afterwards looking back, I don’t think TJ had one flyweight in his stable. Obviously, TJ had his fair share of things to say about the division, some insensitive things that I was somewhat outspoken about.”
“It was just interesting to see and I really felt like TJ came into this thing with absolutely no respect for Henry and definitely not for the division. And it showed through his actions in the build-up and looking back, how many flyweights was he training with? That was a mistake, maybe he’ll remedy that in the rematch. I would suggest it.”
Schnell, meanwhile, will be looking to make it three wins in a row when he takes on Smolka in a bantamweight fight on March 9.
While he is excited for the matchup, he wishes there was more clarity surrounding the flyweight division as he returns to 135 pounds.
“It’s an exciting fight for me. Louis Smolka has been around for a long time. I’ve got a lot of respect for the guy, he’s fought everybody in the flyweight division. Part of me still hopes that we’re still thinking about flyweight and it just so happens I’m fighting Louis at bantamweight this fight.”
“I’m not sure what’s happening moving forward but I am kind of holding onto that thought a little bit. He’s a guy who is relevant in the flyweight division, always has been, so it’s exactly what I wanted.”