dominick-cruz-18.jpgMONTREAL – The UFC might not be able to hold up the bantamweight division much longer for injured champ Dominick Cruz (19-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC). 

“He’s our champ, he’s our guy, and he needs time,” UFC President Dana White on Thursday told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “But we’re getting to the point now where we really need to make a decision.”

White, who spoke to reporters following a pre-event news conference in support of UFC 158, wants to schedule a meeting with Cruz in Las Vegas to talk about the champ’s future. Cruz hasn’t fought since October 2011, when he made his second title defense against now-flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson.

In the meantime, the UFC has crowned an interim bantamweight champion, Renan Barao, who defended his title this past month against Michael McDonald.

The promotion could strip Cruz of his undisputed title and give it to Barao. Whatever is decided, though, White said it needs to be done soon, as much for Barao’s sake as for Cruz. 

“We’ve seen in the past, you can’t sit around and wait for guys to come back or you will make no money and you’ll be out too long, yourself,” he said of the interim champ. “So he’s got to get out there and stay active. Every time this kid fights and wins, it benefits him financially and physically. You have to stay active as a fighter.”

A torn ACL scratched Cruz’s return at UFC 148, and complications from corrective surgery further delayed his recovery. This past month,
“Everybody wants a timeline as much as I do,” he said. “I would like to say, ‘In six months, starting today, I will be back.’ I can’t do that. It’s up to my doctors. It’s up to my physical therapists.”

That uncertainty is the cause of White’s concern. Although the UFC president expressed great respect for Cruz, he admitted that no champ had ever been sidelined so long.

“This poor kid … I’ve never seen anybody with more bad luck than Cruz, man,” White said. “And for him, coming back into this division, you know the way the sport is to have been off for over two years.”

White, however, wouldn’t commit to a cutoff date for possibly stripping Cruz of the title. That decision will be made behind closed doors, if at all. 

“This is stuff that needs to be talked about with him, and even if I had a decision about him, I wouldn’t say it here,” White said. “He deserves the respect to come out to Vegas and sit down and talk about it.”

In the meantime, Barao will defend the interim title for a second time when he meets Eddie Wineland in the main event of UFC 161 this June in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

For the latest on UFC 161, as well as the rest of the UFC’s upcoming schedule, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.

(Pictured: Dominick Cruz)

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Daniel Cormier Injured, Out of UFC 197 Headliner with Jon Jones

  • 27 days ago
  • 120 views

All joking aside, injury has forced Daniel Cormier out of the UFC 197 headliner opposite Jon Jones. read news >>

Tony Ferguson Injured; Rashad Evans vs. Glover Teixeira Now Headlines UFC on FOX 19 Main Event

  • 23 days ago
  • 23 views

Tony Ferguson is out of his scheduled UFC on FOX 19 headlining bout opposite Khabib Nurmagomedov. read news >>

Mike Dolce: After coaches meeting, Ronda Rousey plotting return and 'world domination'

  • 22 days ago
  • 5 views

This past month, renowned MMA nutritionist Mike Dolce found himself in Los Angeles for a “coaches meeting” with longtime client Ronda Rousey.Filed under: MMAjunkie Radio, News, UFC read news >>

VIDEO: Dominick Cruz on Novelty Fights, Conor McGregor, and Legitimacy

  • 22 days ago
  • 20 views

Dominick Cruz weighs in on the legitimacy of "sensational" fights such as Kimbo Slice vs. Dada 5000, Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz, and why fans want to watch. read news >>

Dominick Cruz, Urijah Faber finding new ways to annoy each other all these years later (Yahoo Sports)

  • 21 days ago
  • 19 views

From Yahoo Sports: Cruz and Faber aren't pulling any punches ahead of their long-awaited trilogy fight. read news >>

Dominick Cruz, Urijah Faber finding new ways to annoy each other all these years later (Yahoo Sports)

  • 21 days ago
  • 16 views

From Yahoo Sports: Cruz and Faber aren't pulling any punches ahead of their long-awaited trilogy fight. read news >>

John Teixeira injured, out of Bellator 153 co-main event with Patricio Freire

  • 20 days ago
  • 3 views

Bellator will have to find a new co-main event for Bellator 153 as an injury has forced John Teixeira out of his featherweight bout with Patricio Freire.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Oluwale Bamgbose in for Caio Magalhaes against Cezar Ferreira at UFC on FOX 19

  • 19 days ago
  • 3 views

Caio Magalhaes is injured and out of his UFC on FOX 19 bout with Cezar Ferreira. Heavy hitting Oluwale Bamgbose will step in to face Ferreira on the prelims of the card.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

UFC Fight Night 86 Results: Derrick Lewis Knocks Out Gabriel Gonzaga and Calls Out Roy Nelson

  • 18 days ago
  • 21 views

Former Legacy FC heavyweight champion Derrick Lewis continues to make his mark in the UFC. “The Black Beast” knocked out Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC Fight Night 86 in Zagreb, Croatia on Sunday. read news >>

Grimacing Lucas Martins was worried about being cut at UFC Fight Night 86

  • 18 days ago
  • 6 views

ZAGREB, Croatia – An obviously injured Lucas Martins admitted to playing it safe against Robert Whiteford at UFC Fight Night 86. Filed under: Featured Videos, News, UFC, Videos read news >>