Two-division UFC champion Daniel Cormier puts his heavyweight title on the line for the first time in the UFC 230 main event on Nov. 3 against Derrick Lewis at the famed Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Earlier this month, UFC president Dana White indicated that Cormier would be stripped of his light heavyweight belt and end his career in the heavyweight division. If Cormier defeats Lewis, he’s expected to face former titleholder Brock Lesnar in 2019.
Former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones rematches Alexander Gustafsson on Dec. 29 at UFC 232 and the fight is expected to be for the soon-to-be vacant 205-pound title. That play may hit a snag if Cormier loses to Lewis, though. During a UFC 230 media scrum, Cormier indicated that he may not willingly part with the 205-pound strap.
“If I lost to Derrick, then who’s to say I don’t go, hey, I’m going to go defend my light heavyweight title. Now you can’t take it. Maybe that adds a whole other part to the equation,” said Cormier. “You can’t take both of my belts if I lost that one.
“I am the light heavyweight champion until those guys fight. If the light heavyweight champion loses his heavyweight title, well, wait, I’m willing to defend my belt. Now we have some conversations to have,” stated Cormier.
Daniel Cormier UFC 230 Media Scrum
(Courtesy of UFC)