Damiel Cormier Explains Choosing to Fight Lewis and Potential WWE Role
Sunday, October 21, 2018
In my “Ground and Pound” MMA report a few weeks ago, I wrote about the UFC’s announcement that two-division champion Daniel Cormier will be making his first heavyweight title defense against “The Black Beast” Derrick Lewis in the main-event of UFC 230 on November 3rd in Madison Square Garden.
Fast-forward a couple weeks later and the champion Cormier has opened up on his decision to fight Lewis, who is coming off an impressive last-minute knockout victory over Alexander Volkov, instead of giving former heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic a rematch for the title he had defended a record 4-times.
During a conversation MMAWeekly’s Damon Martin, Cormier mentioned that the UFC 226 pay-per-view didn’t do too well in terms of pay-per-view buys and that he didn’t really make much money from that fight. After looking at the UFC 226’s buyrate, approximately 380,000, it makes sense why Cormier would rather defend his title against Derrick Lewis and then Brock Lesnar.
Cormier stated he intends to retire when he turns 40 in 2019, so it makes sense that he’d want to take fights that will make him the most amount of money possible especially at this point in his career. In terms of the Brock Lesnar fight, that won’t happen until after January 2019 because Lesnar had to return to the USADA testing pool before being eligible to fight in the octagon again. This explains why Cormier is taking a fight with Lewis as he feels it’s a great match-up and it’ll keep him active while he waits for Lesnar.
I don’t see any problem with DC taking these fights because I feel he’s earned that right. He knocked out Stipe Miocic in the first round to win the UFC heavyweight championship in July, so it’s not like the fight was a controversial split-decision win that needs an immediate rematch. Also, Cormier has been a reliable fighter and fills many roles for the promotion including: FOX Sports analyst, commentator, two-division champion, and ambassador for the sport.
Also during Cormier’s UFC 230 media scrum, he revealed that he has postponed a WWE commentary tryout to after UFC 230, so he could focus on defending his heavyweight championship. This is big news because with Smackdown Live moving to FOX next Fall, Cormier, a FOX Sports MMA analyst, would contribute to Smackdown being perceived as more of a sporting event.
BarnBurner has learned that Daniel Cormier’s WWE commentary tryout could be taking place in December, which will be interesting considering his next opponent after Derrick Lewis is current WWE superstar Brock Lesnar.
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Photo Credit:@ufc and ufc.com
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