Daniel Cormier explained why he has an issue with Tony Ferguson moving up to welterweight and fighting Li Jingliang at UFC 279
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Daniel Cormier explained why he has an issue with Tony Ferguson moving up to welterweight and fighting Li Jingliang at UFC 279

Daniel Cormier explains why he has an issue with Tony Ferguson moving up to welterweight and fighting Li Jingliang at UFC 279

It will be Tony Ferguson (25-7 MMA) vs Li Jingliang (19-7 MMA) this coming Saturday, September 10th at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The co-main welterweight bout will see Ferguson, 38, attempting to recover from a four fight losing streak. ‘El Cucuy’s’ latest knockout loss came in May of this year against Michael Chandler (23-7 MMA) in a lightweight bout.

Following the latest loss, Ferguson has been training with Jackson Wink and is moving back up to welterweight status. Ferguson, back in 2011, earned his UFC contract at welterweight when he claimed The Ultimate Fighter season 13 title.

As for Li Jingliang, he’s had 7 wins in his last 10 fights. ‘The Leech’s’ most recent victory came against Muslim Salikhav (18-3 MMA) this past July.

Daniel Cormier, speaking on his ‘DC & RC’ ESPN show explained his issue with Ferguson moving up to welterweight:

“I want to see something positive. I want to see something change – some changes that he has made since he has been to (Greg) Jackson’s gym, Jackson Wink down in Albuquerque, (N.M.). So I want to see something different. Here’s the issue for me: When you get knocked out at 155 by Michael Chandler, when you get TKO’d at 155 by Justin Gaethje, when you get dominated by Beneil (Dariush) and Charles Oliveira at 155, it would not seem like going up to welterweight would be the move.”

Continuing Daniel Cormier said:

“But if there is a guy that could let go of the past and everything that happened prior to go and try to make a statement, it is Tony Ferguson. But in Li Jingliang, this guy is tough. He hits hard, and this is a very difficult matchup in his first time fighting at welterweight in a long time. So while I’m looking for something positive, I don’t expect all that much as of right now. He’s going to have to show me something.”

When Tony Ferguson revealed his plans to move up to 170lbs

In an interview with MMA Junkie following his loss to Michael Chandler, former interim champion Tony Ferguson stated that he would entertain a move up to welterweight.

‘El Cucuy’ stated that he used to knock everyone out during his time in the welterweight division. Ferguson also explained that the cut to 155lbs made him skinnier than he fancies:

“I wouldn’t mind going back up to 170 [lbs]. I knocked everybody out at 170. This cut to 155 is not too hard but I lose a lot of muscle mass man, I fuck**g hate being skinny like that. I look like a little bitch. I fucking don’t like that.”

Interestingly, the 38-year-old came into the UFC as a welterweight. Ferguson was also the winner of The Ultimate Fighter season 13 welterweight finale. In the TUF final, ‘El Cucuy’ secured a first-round knockout win against Ramsey Nijem.

Watch Tony Ferguson talk about his move back up to welterweight below:

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