Sure, championship fights are great. Superfights are even better. But as Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor proved, nothing sells a fight like mutual hatred and UFC grudges.
Right now, there are no two fighters who hate each other more than Cody Garbrandt and Dominick Cruz. We know this because there is an actual measuring stick for hostility – it’s called media. And these two bantamweights are trolling each other so hard that junior high mean girls are taking notes.
Let’s do quick recap of the past few weeks. Their trash talk has gone one for months, but it’s heated up so much lately that you might have missed some of the better parts.
A Brief History of Coming Violence
UFC 199, Post-fight: Garbrandt and Cruz get into a backstage confrontation after “The Dominator” defeats Urijah Faber, Garbrandt’s Team Alpha Male teammate. Cruz disses Garbrandt’s ink, Garbrandt tells Cruz to keep the belt polished for him, and a lot of “what, motherfu*kers” ensue. Amazingly, nobody yells “WorldStar!” the entire time.
August 15: TMZ, the pinnacle of all journalism, catches Garbrandt on the street. After Garbrandt confirms that he is in fact wearing diamond stud earrings, “No Love” states that he’s going to break Cruz’s jaw. He makes fun of the champ’s tribal back tattoo for being a tribal back tattoo. He’s not wrong here.
UFC 202, August 20: Garbrandt knocks out Takeya Mizugaki in the first round. Joe Rogan asks him post-fight what his thoughts are on facing Dominick Cruz. After reiterating that he was going to break his jaw, Garbrandt adds that he would reveal the identity of Cruz’s actual father: “I’m gonna show you who your daddy is for real.” Clearly Garbrandt has been watching classic Maury Povich episodes.
August 24: On The MMA Hour, both men trade words. Garbrandt talks up his 90% KO rate and tells him nemesis that he’s “knocking you the fu*k out.” Cruz responds with with a cool, collected, “I kill hype for a living.” That rounds goes to Cruz.
That’s enough for now. Go ahead and Google the rest, because it’s pretty great. There’s an undeniable allure of e-thuggin’ MMA fighters: these dudes can settle the score in a cage with an audience of millions. And their skillsets make them really damn good at score settling.
Garbrant-Cruz Rivalry: Now What?
While their matchup hasn’t been confirmed, it’s hard to see any other fight being made for Cruz. This is a matchup that can bring eyes to the bantamweight division – a weight class that has always had problems drawing interest. There are too many built-in storylines to ignore.
Where to start? Cruz has had Team Alpha Male’s number for a while, with two victories over captain Urijah Faber, two more against Joe Benavidez and a win over former member T.J. Dillashaw. He’s also one of the most dominant champions in the UFC, and he hasn’t lost since 2008.
As for Garbrandt, he’s undefeated with 10 career wins, nine of which have come by way of knockout. His last three bouts have resulted in first-round KOs. “No Love’s” power is legit and an easy sell in the UFC picks. It also helps that he has perfectly parted hair and looks like he could be a calendar model for sexy baristas. Yes, Garbrandt has star potential.
Let’s Predict Some UFC Odds
Dominick Cruz (-250) vs. Cody Garbrandt (+200)
If and when this matchup gets made, make sure to head over to BookMaker.eu to make your bets. They are one of the premier MMA betting sites and provide BigOnSports with reliable odds.
In a hypothetical matchup between Cruz and Garbrandt, I don’t see any scenario where Cruz isn’t a big favorite. It’s easy to fall in love with Cody’s power, but he’s gotta get a hold of Cruz first. And nobody in the UFC has figured out how to do that yet. His 13-fight win streak includes wins over some of the best lighter weight fighters in the world, like Urijah Faber, flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson, former champion T.J. Dillashaw, and No. 1 contender Joe Benavidez.
Still, considering how the animosity between the two, it’s impossible not to be intrigued by the matchup. Will Cruz leave with his jaw intact? Is his father his real father? Is it possible to mess up Garbrandt’s hair? Dana White and Co., we have to know the answers to these questions.
Who else can’t wait to fight in the UFC? Read UFC Odds: McGregor vs Aldo 2 Moneyline Remains Unchanged