Cody Garbrandt: Dominick Cruz Went Hollywood

If you haven’t heard of Cody “No Love” Garbrandt, you will soon. A top bantamweight contender, the 25-year-old Ohio native is 10-0, which doesn’t include his recent verbal beatdown of bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz.

“He’s been talking crap (in) the media,” Garbrandt began on CBS Sports Radio’s Tiki and Tierney. “He has a direct plug. He’s a Fox analyst. He knows how to use it. But my stuff’s authentic. He’s going in there and it’s one thing when you’re talking about my fighting skills or what you’re going to do to me in the octagon. He’s just making it personal. He’s talking about daddy issues and all this. That’s fine. He does his research and knows that my father is incarcerated. I’m very open about it. For me, to share my story, some kids that are going through the same thing that don’t have that, I’m trying to show them you can do it. Have a dream and then have the courage to chase it.

“Its crazy to me because I had seen an interview where he’s talking about (his upbringing),” Garbrandt continued. “We’re almost cut form the same cloth of having a single mother, coming from a broken family. It’s almost like he’s forgotten where he’s came from. Maybe it’s the gold belt, it’s the fame, it’s him being pegged as the pound-for-pound king of the bantamweight division – and I’m here to humble him. (He) went a little hollywood for sure. He forgot his roots. That’s one thing I’ll always remember. I come from humble beginnings.”

During their backstage altercation, Garbrandt told Cruz that he would knock out Takeya Mizugaki faster than Cruz did and that Cruz would be next. Garbrandt made good on his word, knocking out Mizugaki in 48 seconds at UFC 202 in August. Cruz did it in 61 seconds at UFC 178 in September 2014.

“I could feel the fear radiating off his body,” Garbrandt said of the altercation with Cruz. “He was looking around to see if a security guard was going to break it up.”

Garbrandt said he would have fought Cruz right there.

“Oh, for sure,” he said. “I would have knocked him out and then knocked Takeya out. It’s unprofessional, but at the same (time), they better match this fight up. If there’s one or two more incidents where we run into each other backstage, it’s not going to be just words, especially with him. I’m a fighter. He’s not. He’s an athlete. There’s a lot of athletes in this sport and not enough fighters. I’m a fighter. I’m a born fighter, and he’s not faced anyone like me. I could feel that fear.”

While dominating the bantamweight division is Garbrandt’s top priority, he also has his sights set on Conor McGregor and the featherweight class.

“For sure,” Garbrandt said. “I have a lot adversaries in the bantamweight division and I have a lot of responsibilities to take out everyone in the bantamweight division. Dominick Cruz . . . (is) my sole focus, but I’m here to fight the best. I would definitely be sold on fighting (Conor McGregor). We had a little altercation on Ultimate Fighter, but he’s cool. I like what he’s doing for the sport. He goes out there and fights and his last fight was amazing with Nate. It’s a big-money fight. I would be stupid not to take the fight, and I like my chances with him.”

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