Despite being linked to a lucrative showdown with Brock Lesnar, Daniel Cormier has made it clear that the trilogy fight with Jones is more significant.
The Lesnar fight was one that seemed to be set for Jon Jones himself when he recorded a third-round TKO victory over Cormier at UFC 214.
The troubled former champion’s journey towards redemption was complete. He had dispatched his great rival for the second time and finally looked set to fulfil his destiny and move up to the heavyweight division.
Of course, we all know how things turned out for Jones and now, DC has hijacked his dream – making it a reality with his stunning first-round KO of Stipe Miocic at UFC 226, a win he followed up with a call-out of the WWE superstar Lesnar.
Now, with his first heavyweight title-defense set for this weekend and the prospect of a fight with either Jones, Lesnar, or perhaps even both in the future, Cormier took a moment to reveal his thoughts on both matchups in terms of their effect on his legacy and his financial security.
The champ spoke to FloCombat during fight-week and explained how both fights differ in his mind.
“It’s crazy that people say me and Lesnar would be a mega fight when the reality is the mega fight is Jones and I. We’re the two greatest fighters of all time and we fight each other.
“It’s so easy to say, ‘This guy’s one of the greatest and this guy’s one of the greatest,’ but they never fight each other. Jones and I may be the two best fighters in the history of the sport. That should be the mega fight.
“Unfortunately, it will not net me the money that I would make fighting Brock Lesnar.”
I gave my thoughts on Cormier vs. Jones III and how it will be the most significant fight in the history of the sport in another article a sentiment that DC agrees with.
However, the allure of the payday that comes with a showdown with Brock could see him take that option also.
“Ultimately we would have to decide that as a team and figure out what we want to do.
“Don’t think for a second I’m making pennies when I fight Jones, ’cause both of our pay-per-views have done over 800,000 buys. But when I was on the card with Brock, it did over 1.1 million buys.
“When you get to those numbers and you get 300,000 extra pay-per-view buys, at that number of pay-per-views, that’s a big, big number.”
Legacy is something that no doubt weighs heavily in the mind of DC but until he manages to overcome the challenge that Derrick Lewis presents to him this weekend, it will matter little.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena