Well, I sure hope he’s devastated. I can’t imagine spending over two years away from the sport due to injury, only to have a final chance to defend your bantamweight title, only to get injured again and then be stripped of said title. That’s some brutal stuff, and thus – Dominick Cruz is devastated. Rightfully so.
We feel for Cruz, he’s an incredible athlete and fighter, and no one should be stripped of their title for this, but the UFC’s hand was forced. His coach bemoaned Cruz’s bad luck:
“This fight was no different. He was looking sharp. He was doing great. Even prior to taking the fight he was already sparring 100 percent and training 100 percent. Like I said, I can’t put my finger on what actually caused this injury.”
“Obviously it’s devastating to him. All of us that follow the sport, his fans and guys involved in the sport know that all these guys all strive to be a champion in a division. When you lose the belt to an opponent, it’s a different feeling. When you lose it to yourself, I can’t put in words what he’s feeling because I really don’t know, but I know he’s just devastated. He wanted to go in there and fight Barao and see who the best guy was. It’s a huge setback for him. I think he’s just analyzing himself, analyzing what’s happening and why this happened.
“I can’t imagine being in his shoes, it’s like someone telling you you’re not going to work again for the next three months. This is your passion and this is what you love to do. It’s gotta be devastating.”