Cormier (11-0) is a former Olympic wrestler who made the transition into mixed martial arts in 2009. He’s undefeated and won the 2011 Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix. He will make his UFC debut against former heavyweight titleholder Frank Mir at UFC on Fox 7: Henderson vs. Melendez on April 20 at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., and it may be his last fight as a heavyweight.
“At 205, I think he’d be a beast. I want him whereever he wants to be. I just think that is where he’s going to end up,” said White following UFC on Fuel TV 7 on Feb. 16.
Cormier trains alongside UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez at the American Kickboxing Academy, and the two have said they will not fight one another. White cites the relationship with Velasquez as the reason he expects Cormier to drop weight classes.
“The relationship with Cain, he’s Cain’s wrestling coach. I think that’s what they’re going to do. I think they’re going to have him go to 205.”
“I would not fight (Daniel Cormier),” Velasquez said on a recent episode of UFC Tonight. “He’s my coach, teammate, and friend.”
Cormier indicated following his last fight on Jan. 12 that he plans on cutting down to the 205-pound division and has his sights set on titleholder Jon Jones.
“I’m gonna let Jon defend his belt on April 27 and then I’m gonna kick his ass in the fall,” said Cormier during his post-fight interview.
Jones welcomes the move, but is tired of hearing about it.
“You know, the guy is a tremendous athlete and I wish he would just do it and just stop talking about it,” Jones said about Cormier dropping weight classes when recently speaking to UFC Tonight. “I am open to fighting the best guys in the world.”