Daniel Cormier Hopes For ‘Fairy Tale’ Ending To UFC Career
Daniel Cormier has had truly an extraordinary MMA career. The future Hall Of Famer has won major titles both in the UFC and Strikeforce and has an impressive record of 22-2. But battling top athletes of the world must take its toll.
Cormier has been strongly hinting about his retirement since the end of 2017. In recent weeks, he has stated that if he does not get the opportunity to face Stipe Miocic again by late summer, it will probably be time for him to retire.
In a perfect career-ending scenario, Cormier wins the trilogy and retires as the UFC’s heavyweight champion. Although even then, ‘DC’ acknowledges that it’s going to be tough to walk away from the sport.
“I believe I can [walk away]. It will be the hardest thing I’ll have to do but I believe I can and I think it will make everybody pretty happy in terms of my household, my wife and my kids. As much as they love watching me compete, the chance to see me go out on top would be a fairy tale. I believe I can,” Cormier told MMA Fighting.
“I’m probably one of the most competitive people you’ve ever met and that’s always going to tug at me. But I will have to put that focus to something else. I’ll have to work on my craft in front of the television in order to make up for that.”
As the plan has always been to make the Miocic trilogy fight in the summer, Cormier says that the current coronavirus pandemic situation hasn’t had an impact on the fight.
“If we’re not able to get back to work until the summer, that kind of falls in line with what I was thinking or what the organization and Stipe were thinking for our fight time,” Cormier explained. “The reality is it wouldn’t really affect us in the sense of us not being able to train like we can’t right now.
“As we got closer to the fight, we’d be able to get right back on schedule. Because the fight date was so far away, honestly, it doesn’t really affect us all that much.”
A big reason for the delay since their second fight at UFC 241, has been Miocic’s eye injury. But luckily for ‘DC’, Stipe is now back in the gym.
“It’s encouraging,” Cormier said. “It’s encouraging because for a while he wasn’t training. Then you start hearing all kinds of crazy things like he might have to retire and he won’t be able to do this and he won’t be able to do that. It’s very encouraging that he’s back to work and he’s going to be ready to fight.”
Miocic may be back to full health, but as he said recently, his number one priority right now is working on the front line, during the coronavirus crisis. Something Cormier respects.
“One thing I saw the other day, Stipe said worrying about a fight right now is not on my mind. This guy is one of the people that does try to save lives and his responsibility right now is not to me or the UFC,” Cormier said. “It’s to all these people in the Cleveland area who need help from Stipe the firefighter not Stipe the heavyweight champion of the world.
“I believe his mind is in the right place but I am also happy and encouraged that he’s at least physically ready to start getting back to the work that is to my benefit to the most.”
Although Miocic may be his final rival in his illustrious career, Cormier has enjoyed several great rivalries along the way. When evaluating his previous rivalries, ‘DC’ told MMA Junkie that he believes Jon Jones will always be his most remembered foe, but Stipe will be rubbing shoulders with him.
“The reality is, for everything else that Jon and I were, I think that’s going to be the one that stands the test of time because it was so bitter. But on the competitive side, I think Miocic will be that guy that, when we walk away from this game, you go, ‘Wow, ‘DC’ had two really big series of fights,’ and I think three, honestly, because Anthony Johnson falls in line with that, too.
“I’m just one of those guys who was lucky enough to fight big fights, fight big fights often, and have guys that were good enough to, win or lose, get right back to those big, big fights. The great thing about those rivalries – between the three guys, seven fights – is that every one of them was for a UFC championship. That, to me, is a bigger deal than even having those rivalries.”
Which Daniel Cormier rivalry have you enjoyed the most, Stipe Miocic or Jon Jones?