Daniel Cormier has made it clear that there is only one other heavyweight on his mind should Brock Lesnar be unable to face him inside the octagon.
Daniel Cormier managed to elevate his legacy to another level entirely with his UFC 226 victory over Stipe Miocic. Against all odds, he not only managed to defeat the bigger man to become a dual-weight world champion, but he also managed to do it by way of knockout in the first-round.
Stipe’s own status as the longest-serving heavyweight champion in the promotion’s history saw many people understandably confused when he was passed over for an immediate rematch in favour of DC getting his money-fight against Brock Lesnar.
Lesnar’s own patchy record in the UFC and his issues with USADA made it a controversial call.
Speaking during the UFC 227 broadcast last night, Cormier actually questioned whether Demetrious Johnson should be passed up for an immediate rematch – leading to an interesting development in his plans before retirement.
“I love Henry and I love his idea that he wants to be a two-weight champ. Cool thing to do now. But if anybody deserves a rematch, it’s Demetrious Johnson.
“Come on, he lost a split decision after 11 title defenses. If Demetrious Johnson doesn’t get a rematch, there is no hope for any of us in the entire world, because that means that nothing you could ever do will warrant getting an immediate title shot [rematch].” (via MMAFighting)
His partner in the commentary booth Joe Rogan pressed the two-division champion on the difference between Cejudo and his own situation – citing the decision to pass up long-time heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic for a rematch.
“[Miocic] should [get a rematch], but he went three [defenses]. Three is a lot different than 11. And also, if Brock Lesnar was staring at Stipe, that would happen, but I’ll tell you this right now, I’ll tell you this on record: If Brock Lesnar doesn’t make it to the fight for any reason, I’ll fight Stipe again. That is not a problem.
“There is no reason I wouldn’t fight Stipe. I’m only fighting Brock because I’m fighting Brock. But if he doesn’t make it, I’ll fight Stipe again. There you go.”
It would no doubt be a fight that would go down better with the sport’s hardcore fanbase but in truth, the money that a star of Brock Lesnar’s stature can offer makes the original plan a far more viable one for the UFC brass.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena