Originally posted by Mendax
I thought cell was going all out against Goku? That's why he was so damaged after their fight and needed a sensu bean to recover?
Like Stilt said: Perfect Cell never used 100% power until he fought SS2 Gohan:
https://i.ibb.co/gPtFjYn/Dragon-Ball-Z-v19-010.jpg https://i.ibb.co/zVj1rRL/Dragon-Ball-Z-v19-011.jpg https://i.ibb.co/1rn1Pty/Dragon-Ball-Z-v19-015.jpg
He was suppressing his power prior to that because he wanted the fights to be more exciting(he does have Goku, Vegeta, and Freeza's cells, after all, so that kind of arrogant "logic" makes sense for him.)
But no, Cell was honestly a lot more powerful than FPSS Goku... To the point where even in his markedly depleted state(following Goku's warp-Kamehameha), Cell was still confident that he could beat Goku, even if Goku ate a senzu bean. In fact, Cell stated that even if Goku were back at full power, his chances of actually winning only increased "slightly"... Which would make their fight more fun/exciting for Cell(that's why he was literally goading Goku into eating a senzu, lol):
But obviously Cell wouldn't have been pushing for Goku to eat a senzu if he believed there was even a slight chance that Goku could actually beat him... And the fact that no one disagreed speaks volumes.
Hell, Trunks believed that it would still take ALL of the Z Fighters at FULL power to defeat Cell after he was depleted:
IOW, it would have potentially taken FPSS Goku + FPSS Gohan + ASS Vegeta + ASS Trunks + Piccolo + Krillin + Tien + Yamcha to overcome a depleted Perfect Cell, lol.