Cory Sandhagen has no problem fighting down the rankings, sees Song Yadong as a legit challenge

·2 min read

LAS VEGAS – Cory Sandhagen’s last fight was for a world title, and now he’s fighting someone just at the end of the top 10 of the division.

Sandhagen (14-4 MMA, 7-3 UFC) returns to action this Saturday against Song Yadong, as the two are scheduled to headline UFC Fight Night 210 this Saturday. The former UFC title challenger had no problem taking a fight against Yadong (19-6-1 MMA, 8-1-1 UFC) – even if it meant taking a step back in the rankings.

Sandhagen is not down to play the politics game and campaign for a top contender. He sees Yadong as a legit threat, and that’s enough of a reason for him to accept the fight.

“The rankings are just for people to understand the guys that are fighting better because there are a lot of fighters in the UFC, and when they have a certain number next to them, it gives them a level of importance that they may or may not be qualified for,” Sandhagen told reporters including MMA Junkie at media day on Wednesday. “But I think Song is definitely a top-10 guy. I think he’s a very good fighter, I think he’s beat some really good guys before, and that’s why I’m willing to fight him.

“I do think he’s good, and he brings a danger that it’s easy for me to wake up for and get up in the mornings.”

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Sandhagen hasn’t competed in almost a year – October 2021. He last fought UFC 267, losing a decision to Petr Yan for the UFC interim bantamweight title. Sandhagen is happy he took time off, as he sees it needed for him to go on another title run.

“It was a great time away,” Sandhagen said. “It was definitely needed. I just wanted to develop some of the skills that I needed to develop that I feel that I really need in order to be champ. Lost a couple of close ones recently, so got kind of sick of that, so wanted to fix that. It was good time away. I really needed it in order to become an actual champion.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC Fight Night 210.

Sandhagen vs. Song: How many rounds? - Powered By PickUp

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie