UFC Bantamweight Champion Dominick Cruz will be defending his championship against Cody Garbrandt at UFC 207, says that Garbrandt was granted a title shot because it would make for great business.
“The new owners of the UFC, they’re a management company, they deal with high, elite-level stars, and if you really look at the background of the people who just spent $4.2 billion on the UFC, they’re going to make specific decisions according to making the business better,” Cruz told MMA Junkie. “Dillashaw, in my opinion, doesn’t make the business better. Cody, with the emotional wreck that he is, people can grasp to that because they see the emotion in him, they see what he’s thinking, they see what he’s feeling. He lets it all out. Dillashaw is fake. Everything Dillashaw does is a lie. He can’t let his true self out. If he did let his true self out I think he would be much more interesting – but Dillashaw holds back. You saw it in our first fight, in our first interview, he holds back his emotion. Now, after I punked him, and then I beat him and took away his interim title and made him realize he never was the champion, he started talking. You’re hearing more talking out of T.J. Dillashaw right now than you ever heard not only when he was the interim champion, but ever in his entire career. You’re hearing more of Dillashaw now. I helped Dillashaw. I made Dillashaw more relevant. I made Dillashaw have a voice and I taught Dillashaw how to come out of his own shell. He can hate me for that all he wants, but this guy is talking more than ever. That being said, he’s doing that after he lost the opportunity by not letting himself out in the first place.”
Dillashaw, several weeks back, even offered Cruz $100,000 of his own money for a rematch with the champion, whom defeated him at UFC Fight Night 81.
“It was a desperation move and it was sad because really he’s undercutting himself,” Cruz said. “He’s showing why fighters have been hurt in the past. He doesn’t credit himself as a fighter by offering his own money to fight me. Why would you offer your own money to fight me? I’m not a gambler, I’m a professional athlete. I’m never, ever going to gamble on my own work ethic and the things I do and the things that I know that I am. I’m never going to gamble on that. He would gamble on that because he needs too because I have everything to lose and he’s trying to get everything that he thought he had that I had before he even had it, if that even makes sense. He never had the belt. He thought he was the champion, but he wasn’t. That’s why he had to fight me, then he lost to me and realized he wasn’t any more and he never was. After that he decided, ‘Here’s what I’m going to do.’ But we’re not a gambling organization. This is a professional athletic organization and you’re cutting yourself short by showing how fighters undercut each other by going their own way. Instead of going with getting the most amount of money for each fight, he’s willing to offer his own $100,000 to fight me? You know what that would do to the landscape of the 135-pound division? It would hurt it. It wouldn’t build it. Champions are supposed to build the division, not break it down and take money from it. That’s what T.J. Dillashaw’s trying to do. He’s trying to break down the 135-pound division by offering up his own money to get a fight. Why would I ever do that? I’m a professional athlete and they’re going to pay me three times what you’re offering me. Who cares what you’re even offering me? And who cares what you think? This is about being a professional, showing up, doing the job according to who they put in front of me. That person is Cody Garbrandt. I don’t run this organization. Nobody does except for the head execs who are worth $4.2 billion. You think they’re going to let somebody else choose how this thing goes? Absolutely not.”
One of Cruz’s biggest rivals over the years has been Urijah Faber, who Cruz believes has helped Garbrandt in preparing for the fight.
“(Garbrandt’s) run by Faber and he’s good at talking toward title shots,” Cruz said. “The guy’s got eight title shots he’s never completed, so any guy with that background in media and understanding how to get a title fight, is going to help Cody get that title fight, and that’s what he did. He coached Cody into getting a position by doing what the big executives of the UFC want to see. T.J. Dillashaw left that coaching and he went to hang out with (Duane) Ludwig to sell peanut butter and talk about being a martial artist when that’s nothing that he’s actually trying to do. He’s actually just wanting a big fight, but he’s unwilling to do what it takes. He keeps his mouth shut but he’s finally just starting to open it up now. Now we’re starting to see who T.J. Dillashaw really is. He’s a whiny little crybaby when he doesn’t get his way. That’s basically about it.”
UFC 207 takes place on Friday, December 30 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada with Amanda Nunes and Ronda Rousey headlining.