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Henry Cejudo Removed Longtime Coach Eric Albarracin from Team Ahead of UFC 298

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Longtime coach Eric Albarracin was not a part of Henry
Cejudo’s camp ahead of the former two-division champion’s fight
with Merab
Dvalishvili at
UFC 298.

Cejudo parted ways with Albarracin, who has been his coach since
before his MMA career began, on an episode of the UFC “Countdown”
show. It was unclear exactly when that particular episode was
filmed.

“You were with me for my last Olympic trials, and you’ve been there
for me, but as of right now, I just want to let you know that for
this camp, dude, I’m getting rid of specific coaches – and that’s
you included,” Cejudo said to Albarracin.

At least on camera, Albarracin seemed to take his dismissal in
stride.

“The goal has always been the same, for you to be the greatest
combat athlete of all-time,” Albarracin said. “To me, that was a
dream come true.”

Cejudo, meanwhile, commended the coach for his classy response.

“This is why this man is the GOAT coach — the most unselfish human
that you will ever meet,” Cejudo said. “Captain Eric
Albarracin.”

While Cejudo has remained at Fight Ready, he revealed on the
episode that he wanted to have less voices for this camp.

“Sometimes you get too close to somebody and people just get too
comfortable. … Right now, what I want to do in this fight camp is
keep it strictly business,” Cejudo said.

“… Every fight should be a different cocktail, and you have to be
able to adjust and grab different coaches that can take you to
wherever it is that you actually want to go.”

Cejudo returned from a three-year retirement at UFC 288, where he
dropped a split decision to then champion Aljamain
Sterling in a bantamweight title bout last May. The Olympic
gold medalist recently revealed that he would
consider retiring again if he were to lose to Dvalishvili at
UFC 298.

UFC 298 takes place on Saturday at the Honda Center in Anaheim,
California, and is headlined by a featherweight championship clash
between Alexander
Volkanovski and Ilia
Topuria. The main card — which includes Cejudo vs. Dvalishvili
— airs on pay-per-view via ESPN+ beginning at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.

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