Henry Cejudo put on quite a show at UFC 238 media day on Thursday (see it here). The flyweight champion arrived at the festivities wearing a crown and a cape, and when it came time for his pre-fight face-off with his opponent Marlon Moraes, clambered onto the stage with an armful of props.
There was a Mickey Mouse toy, which Cejudo kicked into the crowd. There was a rubber snake, which the champ whipped at the ground. There was a plush rabbit, drawn from a top hat, which met a similar fate to its rodent cousin Mickey.
For those familiar with the nicknames used by UFC fighters, the symbolism was not difficult to unpack.
For those who are having a hard time understanding this strange scene, however, Henry Cejudo explained what he was trying to convey.
The Mickey Mouse doll, he explained, represented Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson, who he defeated via controversial decision last summer. The snake, meanwhile, represented TJ Dillashaw, who he clubbed to a first round TKO earlier this year. The rabbit, finally, represented Moraes, who fights with the nickname “Magic.”
“I pulled out Mickey Mouse, which is Demetrious,” Cejudo continued. “I pulled out the snake, which is T.J. And then I pulled out the rabbit, which was Marlon Moraes, and then I kicked it. That’s my magic trick.
“I don’t believe in magic. It’s all a bunch of illusions. Show me Saturday night.”
So there it is. It’s unlikely that Henry Cejudo will be receiving a Tony Award for his on-stage antics, but it certainly got people talking.
Do you think he can defeat “Magic” Marlon Moraes at UFC 238 this weekend?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 6/7/2019.