UFC Brooklyn: As Cejudo Pushes to Resurrect Flyweight Division, Dana White Non-Committal

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Henry Cejudo UFC 227 UFC Brooklyn
Henry Cejudo Credit: Mike Sloan/Sherdog.com

As Henry Cejudo prepares to defend his title against a hostile invader dead set on decimating his weight class, UFC President Dana White is non-committal about the division’s future.

At Thursday’s UFC Brooklyn press conference ahead of this weekend’s coming out party on ESPN/ESPN+, one thing was clear. Flyweight, the very existence of the weight class, likely hangs in the balance. Over six years after the crowning of the UFC’s inaugural 125lb champion following a flyweight tournament, the division is in danger. Demetrious Johnson won gold and held it from UFC 152 in Toronto to UFC 227 last August. He became an all-time great, but gained more followers for his gaming exploits on Twitch than his feats in the cage. Henry Cejudo, the man who inherited the weight class after doing the unthinkable and beating Johnson last year, is pushing for the division to stay.

T.J. Dillashaw, who is challenging Cejudo for the flyweight title Saturday? There’s little question that he’s in the fight simply for a second title. While he has handled the weight cut well so far, it will certainly take a toll on his body. Long term, cutting to 125 likely isn’t viable.

Dillashaw at times has tried to make things personal, saying previously he’s there to kill the division. Henry Cejudo seems to have seen through those promotional tactics. “To him it might be personal, to me it’s a business,” Cejudo told reporters on Thursday. He’s the strongest he has ever felt, right back to his twenties. Which means Cejudo is ready to fight for the division.

UFC President Dana White, however, was non-committal. “I don’t know. We’ll see what happens on Saturday,” he said in regards to the future of the weight class. Even as Cejudo interjected, saying “Saturday night, the flyweight division is going to be resurrected. Let it be known.”

It certainly has a win or go home feeling to it. Which might just raise the stakes — and fan interest — for the main event on Saturday. And if fan interest isn’t there, the division might not be either.

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