Corey Anderson has always tried to be humble throughout his entire career but following three dominant wins in a row and still being passed over for a title shot, he’s finally letting his voice be heard.
The former ‘Ultimate Fighter’ winner grew up inside the Octagon after having only three professional fights before getting drafted onto the reality show and he’s definitely suffered his share of ups and downs.
In 2018, Anderson really turned things around with three consecutive victories including a pair of wins former title contender Glover Teixeira and top five ranked light heavyweight contender Ilir Latifi.
Despite those high profile wins, his name was never even rumored as a potential opponent for Jon Jones after the light heavyweight champion declared his intention to make a quick turn around to fight against after defeating Alexander Gustafsson this past December.
“It definitely bugs me,” Anderson told MMAWeekly on Wednesday. “It bugs me especially when we signed the contract to fight Ilir Latifi we were told that would be the No. 1 contender’s fight. The winner of that would get the next title shot. Same thing they were saying about Ilir and Glover [Teixeira], the winner of that would have got the title fight. I stepped in for Ilir and I beat Glover but I didn’t get a call. Then ‘if you beat Ilir, he gets the next shot’ then I beat Ilir and again no call.
“It’s like they’re going to keep having me beat people up like a gatekeeper but I guarantee if somebody beat me, they would get the call or they are going to keep boosting up these young guys and have me keep beating the old guys to make way for them.”
According to Anderson, the UFC not only didn’t consider him for the title fight at UFC 235 this weekend but they actually called and asked him to fill in short notice against Misha Cirkunov on the preliminary card.
While he’s never turned down an opportunity since first arriving in the UFC, Anderson saw that offer almost as a slap in the face after he’s earned his position in the rankings yet he’s still being called for short notice fights against opponents who haven’t even landed a spot in the top 10.
“They called me on like two weeks notice and they wanted me to fight Misha [Cirkunov] at UFC 235. Like what the f—k they don’t even respect me enough — I mean I’m ranked sixth, why would I be taking short notice fights against somebody that’s ranked way behind me?” Anderson stated.
“Now they calling wanting me to fight Gus [Alexander Gustafsson] I guess, you see the media making posts about us fighting. I’m not fighting s—t. Ain’t nobody talked to me. I told Ali [Abdelaziz] I’m not doing s—t. It frustrates me. I’m not doing anything right now. I’m going to wait until my baby’s born and then we’ll see what happens after that. I’m not just going to jump into anything cause y’all want me to.”
Anderson intended to sit out through the first few months of the New Year with a baby on the way, which is why he ultimately didn’t make too much noise about Anthony Smith getting the shot at Jones this weekend.
Still, Anderson doesn’t know what else he has to do to finally get the UFC’s attention but he knows facing Gustafsson in the summer isn’t the way to do it.
“What am I fighting Gus for? He’s lost three title fights. Even if he beats me, if that was the case, they’re not giving him the title fight,” Anderson explained. “He’s lost three of them. He had one other fight against Glover that he won, well I beat Glover. His one other fight was Jan Blachowicz. Well, I destroyed Jan Blachowicz, two 10-8 rounds in there. He didn’t finish him.”
Right now, Anderson is just holding out for the winner of Jones vs. Smith after they face off in the UFC 235 main event this weekend.
In his mind, the former college wrestler turned fighter isn’t asking for anything he hasn’t earned after a career built in the UFC and a recent win streak that he’ll put up against anybody in the light heavyweight division.
“I feel I’ve done enough to deserve that title shot. I don’t want it. I don’t need it. I’ve earned it,” Anderson said. “I’ve earned my opportunity. Quit dogging me out, quit treating me like trash. I’m a young man that’s working hard everyday. I always make weight, I’ve never failed a drug test, I’m always on time and I go out there and I perform. I don’t duck fights. I’ve proved myself so now there’s no reason to keep taking these dumb fights. So why are they still disrespecting me and dog me out like I’m a nobody?
“Why would I fight Gus or anybody when there’s a chance I could get a title shot? Let’s wait and see what happens. Jon said after the last fight, we tweeted back and forth and we agreed let’s fight.”
Unfortunately those social media exchanges didn’t get Anderson any closer to his ultimate goal so that’s why he’s finally voicing his opinion that the UFC is disrespecting him by not even considering him for a title shot.
For now, Anderson is going to keep waiting for the call and he hopes it comes after this weekend because he’s anxious to sign the contract as long as the title is on the line.
“I’m ready to go. My pen is in hand. If they call me with a contract, it will be signed in five seconds,” Anderson said. “Cause I want that, I need that, that’s mine. That’s what I’m here for. I’m not here for checks. I’m not here for money. I’m fine taking this time off. All my fight money is in the bank. I’m here for one reason and that’s the belt.
“Give me what I’ve earned. I’m here for one reason. I don’t care about the fame, the attention and the money. I’m here for one thing. Give me the belt, that’s all I want. That’s the only fight that I want is the winner of this fight. The only fight that I deserve is the winner of that fight.”