We haven't heard a whole lot from Dominick Cruz since he was dethroned in a shocking loss to Cody Garbrandt at UFC 207. The former bantamweight kingpin took his loss on the chin, giving props to the man he had spent months exchanging heated words with and even stating that he would be okay with rival TJ Dillashaw receiving the next shot at the title while he mends his wounds.
But if you think Cruz is looking for an easy rebound fight next, think again.
While sitting in at the FOX analysts desk at UFC Denver last weekend, Cruz found himself in the crosshairs of yet another bantamweight contender, Raphael Assuncao, who called for a fight with "The Dominator" after defeating Aljamain Sterling by split decision.
Cruz's response was characteristically calculated.
"It’s not a question of if I’ll fight him,” Cruz said. “I fight the best in the world. I’m ready to fight for the belt. That’s not Assuncao, and I’m not the guy for him."
Currently the #4 ranked bantamweight in the division, Assuncao has spent the majority of the past three years on the shelf mending a rib injury suffered in training. His win over Sterling was his first since being defeated by Dillashaw in their rematch at UFC 200, and apparently wasn't impressive enough to earn much of Cruz's respect.
The only question now is when we can expect to see Cruz back in action. Garbrandt seemed more than willing to give Cruz a rematch in the immediate aftermath of their fight, but according to "No Love", he was turned down. With Garbrandt and Dillashaw now set to square off as coaches on the next season of The Ultimate Fighter, it looks like it will be some time before Cruz is able to make good on his claims.
Let's hope he's able to stay healthy in the meantime.