Henry Cejudo and Marlon Vera will face off at UFC 292 in a bout between top-ranked bantamweights.
UFC President Dana White confirmed that Cejudo would be facing Vera on the card, nixing talks of retirement following Cejudo’s narrow points loss to Aljamain Sterling at UFC 288. Cejudo wants another shot at the title and was even willing to face the streaking Merab Dvalishvili to get it.
Dvalishvili, Sterling’s teammate and training partner, is out with a hand injury after his demoralizing win over Petr Yan. Instead, the #6 ranked Vera gets the assignment and a chance to change his fortunes against the future Hall of Famer.
Vera is coming off a horrific one-sided beating to Cory Sandhagen last March. Sandhagen beat the living daylights out of Vera but had to settle for a bizarre split decision. That loss snapped a four-win streak which included wins over Rob Font and Dominick Cruz.
UFC 292 showdown has major implications at bantamweight
Cejudo vs. Vera figures to be a good fight if Vera has recovered. The 36-year-old Cejudo showed that he is still a world-class fighter at bantamweight, and is wisely taking a fight to shake off the rust from a three-year retirement he ended by going straight at Sterling.
Considering Vera’s history with Sean O’Malley, who will challenge Sterling in the main event, this fight could likely crown the next challenger for the title.
There is no love lost between these two. Cejudo criticized Vera’s performance against Sandhagen, telling him to “Get to the back of the line.” Vera would respond by calling Cejudo “broke,” and an attention seeker.
Early odds heavily favor Cejudo. According to DraftKings, he’s a solid favorite to win at -330.
With this addition, as well as Rob Font vs. Yadong Song also being made for the card and the Sterling vs. Sean O’Malley main event, it looks like Boston belongs to the bantamweights when UFC 292 rolls along.