Donald Cerrone has confirmed that he’ll be fighting Diego Sanchez at welterweight next, adding that he’s plotting a violent victory, then a move back down to lightweight.
Rumors about a May 8 Cerrone vs. Sanchez fight emerged last week, with Sanchez announcing it would likely be the final fight of his long career.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Cerrone confirmed that he’ll be fighting Sanchez next, explaining how the matchup came together, and clarifying that he intends to return to the 155-pound lightweight division after the fight.
“Everyone was booked up,” Cerrone said (via MMA Fighting). “All the fights were booked. Yeah, ‘55 is what I wanted to do. Then Diego Sanchez went and, I guess, showed up to the UFC and begged and pleaded with them to make me his retirement fight. So they called me and they asked me and I said, ‘Sure.’
“With this fight, yeah, it is at ‘70 but that doesn’t mean I’m going to get big. I’m gonna treat it like a ‘55 fight. I’m gonna try and walk in there at ‘70- or 168. Try and be on weight, fight at ‘70 and just be ready for moving my body down to 155. That’s the plan.”
Cerrone and Sanchez trained together at JacksonWink MMA in Albuquerque for many years, but their relationship soured when the former left the team.
Today, after Sanchez has also departed JacksonWink, there seems to be no love lost between them.
“He says it’s two legends going at it,” Cerrone said. “I don’t think so. He talked a lot shit when I left Jackson’s and now he did the same thing and left. It’s funny. I was just doing what I had to do. Built my own gym, trained my own people, starting making this mold which I think was the right move to do in my career and he had a lot to say about it. He said he wanted to fight me so here’s his chance. Be careful what you wish for. So yeah, this should be a fun highlight reel fight for me.”
While Cerrone is anticipating an impressive win over Sanchez, he’s not underestimating his foe. That being said, he did note that Sanchez used to be more dangerous than he is now.
“I’m not overlooking the kid, by no means,” Cerrone said. “There’s areas where he could be dangerous and if I was fighting old Diego, 10 years ago, yeah, he was tough. Hard pace. I used to train with the guy, I know. . .
“He wants this to be his ride into the sunset, and I have no problem giving it to him.”
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