Daniel Cormier Would Love a Shot at UFC Gold, But Loyalties Are With Strikeforce

June 1, 2012
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Newly crowned Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix champion Daniel Cormier isn’t in a rush to get to the UFC, but he sure wouldn’t mind a title shot when he gets there.

The former Olympian, who dominated Josh Barnett en route to a unanimous decision victory to cap off the tournament, is excited about his UFC future, but right now he’s still committed to at least one more fight in Strikeforce.

While most seem upset at the fact that Cormier has to fight once more in the UFC’s sister promotion, he’s at peace with it all. He’s known ever since the new deal was struck between the powers that be at Zuffa and Showtime for Strikeforce to stay alive, Cormier was going to have at least one more fight in the promotion should he win the Grand Prix.

Still, in a perfect world Cormier would love for his next fight to be against reigning UFC champion Junior Dos Santos, it’s just not going to happen so why dwell on it?

“In a perfect world, I would love that fight. I mean who doesn’t want to fight for the most prestigious belt in mixed martial arts? But right now my loyalties are to Scott Coker and the people at Strikeforce and Showtime. They’ve taken care of me for two and a half years, and treated me well,” Cormier told MMAWeekly Radio.

“It was determined before that I would have another fight. My loyalties are there right now because that’s where I fight. If and when I do go over to the UFC, then I’ll address all that other stuff. Whoever I beat after this fight with Josh Barnett and it’s time to come over, you have to look at my resume and look at a heavyweight that has those quality wins in a row and say does this guy deserve to have a shot over him?”

Cormier does believe however that should he win his next fight in Strikeforce that a title shot should be awaiting him. UFC President Dana White agrees and said recently that if Cormier chooses to stick around at heavyweight, he will get a crack at the heavyweight title.

“If he comes over and wants to fight for the heavyweight championship, yes,” White stated.

For now however, Cormier will focus on what is actually next and that’s recovery from surgery. The American Kickboxing Academy fighter broke his hand in the first round of his fight with Barnett, and had surgery on Monday to repair the damage done.

If recovery goes well, Cormier is hopeful to be back in the cage by the fall of 2012.

“I have surgery on Monday and then Tuesday/Wednesday I can actually get back on my cardio and running, and then on the following Monday I can actually start doing everything else. I mean I can grapple, I can wrestle, I just can’t punch,” said Cormier.

“I’ll hopefully be able to stay in some decent shape, not get as big as I was between this fight and the last fight and then I’m looking at about 6 to 8 weeks of actual recovery time before I can start punching. If that’s the case, I’m hoping to fight in 3 ½ to 4 months.”

There has been no word from Strikeforce officials or UFC officials for that matter on who could potentially come in to face Cormier for his last fight before switching promotions later this year or early next year.

If everything falls in line however, Daniel Cormier could be fighting for the UFC heavyweight title before too much more time passes.

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  • He seems like a great young man, with a great attitude. I still question giving anyone from a minor league an immediate shot at the big league title.
    Let’s see who he fights next and how well he does in that fight and go from there.
    Yes I know Caveman Diaz was given an immediate shot at GSP but I wasn’t for that either. As things turned out the Caveman proved he wasn’t up to it.

    • shawn

      minor league are you serious dc is a 2 times bronze medal winner and he showed it when has any one name one person tossed josh around like dc did josh is a beast and got ragdolled

    • ntokomotswana

      i dont believe in strikeforce being minor league..and ufc on another level.maybe is money and time put on ufc…lookin at brock vs overeem fight u cant judge ufc or strikeforce as a whole organization but fighter.s individual performance.

  • bdono554

    Cormier has more wins over top 10 fighters coming out of strike force than either diaz or overeem did so he’s a little more battle tested and deserving than either of those bums.

  • Look forward to seeing him compete as soon as his hand is healed up.

  • Booker T

    Really am a fan of this guy. Great personality and attitude. Hope he comes over and kicks butt.

    • Lesnardo

      UFC is a completely different ball game. Barnett is only as good as Mir or Werdum. And you know what the current champ did to both of them. Plus, Overeem and Cain are right below JDS willing to beat anybody up before they can even get a shot at the title. On top of that you have monsters like Carwin and maybe Brock.

      • Booker T

        No one thought Buster Douglas would beat Mike Tyson either.

      • shawn

        barrnet would beat both mir and werdum neither of them can wrestle worth a shit and if you cant wrestle then you might as well hang it up it is the first art you should learn dictates where the fight will take place dc will take jds done you can bet that shit bra

  • jonnypatrick

    I just wonder if he would fight Cain down the road, if he is able to beat JDS. We will have another training partner situation on our hands.

    • Booker T

      You can bet the farm he would fight and put a beating on Cain.

      • jonnypatrick

        I think you are getting the cart ahead of the horse here Booker T! I think that Cain put a much worse beating on Bigfoot than Cormier did and also I believe that Cain would have finished Barnett. I give Cormier all the credit he deserves and he is a class act but the UFC is a whole new kind of beast than Strikeforce. I think that Gilbert Melendez would not be a top 5 guy in the UFC lightweight division.

        • Booker T

          Cormier softened up Bigfoot for Cain. Styles make fights. Foreman knocked out Frazier. Frazier beat Ali. Ali knocked Foreman out. Cormier is a bigger beast than the UFC!!!!

          • MrAdidas

            FAIL! Show me the proof that a guy in Strikeforce could lay a beating on Cain, when Cain only has one loss. Think b4 you speak. FYI: I doubt it very much that Cain would fight Cormier, they are part of AKA & they do NOT fight training partners/brothers. IMO theres alot more to lose than there is to gain from winning the belt. Most people are worried about how the Camp will be after the fight is over, but most fighters are more worried/concerned about the b4 the fight shit, like who trains where? who gets what trainers? who gets what training partners? etc etc etc. These are all things fans know nothing about, nor do they even know the significance of the chemistry of a full time gym/MMA camp.

            Keep telling the fighters what most fans write … “just go train at another top MMA gym”. If it were only that easy!

  • atmosphere

    IMO, Cormier is harder to market than other UFC rookies given his height and physique, so I don’t imagine him getting an immediate title shot no matter what. He’ll have to be given a fight or two to build him up first.

    that said, I love his attitude and his loyalty towards SF and Coker.