Now, thanks to Faber’s victory over Brian Bowles at UFC 139 this past weekend, Cruz-Faber III is on schedule for 2012. Faber defeated “The Dominator” back in 2007 via submission, handing Cruz who lone career defeat, while Cruz has won ten fights since the Faber loss, including a decision victory over Demetrious Johnson this past October in his second successful title defense of his UFC belt. Some have questioned whether Faber deserves another shot at the belt so quickly, but don’t count Cruz among those people.
“The way that he beat Bowles, I think it warrants a title fight for him. That’s fine with me. I’ve got no problem,” said Cruz, while appearing on The MMA Hour earlier this week. “It was going to be him or Bowles, I knew that coming into that fight, and I was ready to take on either one of them.”
Cruz still reflects on his loss to Faber, saying, “He beat me fair and square that fight but I don’t look at myself anywhere near where I was then. My last fight with Faber I feel I fought the best Faber there’s been so far and I beat him. So I know I’m going to do it again.”
Faber made a push for UFC president Dana White to make the two bantamweights the next coaches on the upcoming season of TUF, something Cruz is fine with, as well.
“I haven’t heard anything about it yet, but I think me and Faber both campaigned for the idea before our last match up, and I think a lot of people were interested in it and want to see us both as coaches,” Cruz said. “I think it’d be an awesome opportunity. I’d love to do it.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC
MMATraining Take: Cruz-Faber III will end all discussion about who is the best bantamweight in the world right now. If Cruz can avoid Faber’s takedowns, he should be able to out-strike the former WEC champ. Faber must find a way to connect on some serious strikes, as Cruz is great at avoiding punches. I don’t think the UFC will place these two as coaches on the first season of TUF on the new network, as they just don’t have the same appeal as some more-known UFC stars.