Former UFC Champ Eyes New Weight Class, Immediate Title Shot

Cody Garbrandt

Getty Cody Garbrandt reacts to his victory over Dominick Cruz in their UFC bantamweight championship bout during the UFC 207 event on December 30, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Former UFC bantamweight champion Cody “No Love” Garbrandt is planning a drop to the flyweight division and he is campaigning for an immediate title shot against champ Deiveson Figueiredo. Figueiredo is the newly crowned flyweight king, winning the vacant title earlier this month when he knocked out Joseph Benavidez.

After suffering three brutal finishes in a row, No Love took over a year hiatus from the promotion. He returned to action on June 6 when he fought bantamweight mainstay Raphael Assuncao at UFC 250.

Garbrandt looked to have returned to form, putting on a vintage performance and finishing Assuncao with a knockout-of-the-year candidate.

With that victory, Garbrandt seems to want to ride his wave of momentum and challenge for a world title. But it would be at a weight class he is unfamiliar with, flyweight. He has been vocal in the past about dropping down, however, and his manager Ali Abdelaziz has been in contact with the UFC brass.

In an interview with MMA Fighting, No Love said: “As far as I know, I don’t have a contract in hand. We’re trying to wait on that with Ali and Dana [White] and Sean [Shelby] and Mick [Maynard]. I’ve actually been vocal about going to 125 for quite some time now. We spoke about it in the past before the Assuncao fight and I feel like it’s great. I’m able to do it now, early still in my career. I just turned 29.”

Garbrandt is interested in challenging for the flyweight title, winning it and moving back up to his home of bantamweight. He said, “I’m able to go to 125, challenge and win that title there, and then go back up to 135 pounds and compete with the best of them there.”

No Love Believes The Time Is Right to Make the Shift From 135 Pounds to 125 Pounds

In the interview with MMA Fighting, No Love said that he was hoping to make the transition to flyweight soon and is eyeing a shot at Figueiredo before the end of 2020.

He said:

I feel like it’s a time in my life and my career where it’s very pivotal for me to make this transition into flyweight and bantamweight. I don’t think a lot of the flyweight guys could come up to bantamweight and compete at the elite level that I am, so I’m very blessed I’m able to do that. So yeah, hopefully I get this shot against Figueroa, Figueiredo – whatever his name is. Great guy. I think that he’s a tough, tough competitor, I just think that I’m way more skillful than him and excited for the challenge at task. Hopefully we’ll get it done and I can get in the octagon before this year’s up again.

Garbrandt has a professional MMA record of 12-3. He won the bantamweight title in 2016 when he defeated Dominick Cruz by unanimous decision. No Love lost the belt in his next fight, however, when he was finished by TJ Dillashaw.

Figueiredo is currently 19-1 in his career, winning the flyweight title at UFC Fight Night 172 on July 19th.

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