After Cormier defeated Stipe Miocic to become a two-division champion at UFC 226, he revealed plans to fight twice more before his targeted retirement in March. One of those, of course, is a blockbuster clash with Brock Lesnar, who confronted Cormier in the Octagon after the Miocic fight. That matchup cannot happen until early 2019, once Lesnar fulfills the remaining six months from a previous USADA suspension for a failed drug test.
Prior to that, Cormier said he expected to put his 205-pound title on the bout one last time. Since UFC 226, however, there has been speculation that the American Kickboxing Academy stalwart will forego that final light heavyweight defense in favor of waiting on Lesnar.
In a recent appearance on “Live with Kelly and Ryan,” Cormier reiterated his plans to defend the light heavyweight championship before squaring off with Lesnar.
“For me to go back down, it’s going to be difficult to defend this belt. But I plan on doing it,” Cormier said. “Honestly, I am a heavyweight. I weigh 245 pounds, normally. But then I cut down to 205 whenever I fight [at] 205, so I lose 40 pounds to fight in that weight class.”
Cormier began his MMA career with 13 consecutive victories at heavyweight before moving to 205 pounds. In his new division, the only man to defeat him in nine bouts was Jon Jones (twice), though one defeat was overturned after “Jonny Bones” failed a drug test. Cormier became champion first by submitting Anthony Johnson at UFC 187, and he was reinstated as champion after Jones was suspended last year.
Cormier believes his resume in two divisions cements his legacy as one of the sport’s greatest fighters.
“It means legacy. I’m 39 years old, so for a long time, I thought about being remembered as one of the greats. And by doing this, I’m always gonna be remembered as my career ends,” he said.