With little muss or fuss, light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier has scrapped his old UFC contract for a new eight-fight deal that makes him very happy.
Cormier met with CEO Lorenzo Fertitta and company president Dana White last week to talk about his future with the company, and it appears that everything went well for the champion. Cormier told MMAJunkie Radio on Monday that he had four fights left on his previous contract heading into the meeting, but left with the new deal that will likely keep him in the UFC for the remainder of his career.
“I was like, ‘This is what I feel like we deserve as a guy that’s done everything he’s supposed to and carried himself like a professional athlete should carry himself,’ and they said, ‘You know what, you’re right,’ and they pretty much just gave it to me, which is awesome,” said the 36-year-old champion.
Cormier didn’t reveal any financial particulars, but reiterated that he intends to fight returning former champion Jon Jones in his next bout, though questions still remain about when and where that fight will happen.
The UFC has booked an April event at Madison Square Garden in New York City, but is currently undergoing a legal fight to make it become a reality. Should that event come to fruition, it would certainly be an attractive option for what would be a blockbuster main event.
Cormier, however, has said on several occasions that he doesn’t like the idea of “rewarding” Jones by fighting him in front of his home state for his first fight back after facing the disgrace of a felony hit-and-run charge in Albuquerque, N.M.
On Monday, Cormier lightened his stance on the matter just a bit, saying that he explained his position to the UFC and that they seemed to listen to him. For now, the plan is for Cormier to take a little time off after three title bouts in 2015 before making any determination about the bout with Jones.
Cormier said the UFC wanted to revisit his next step after the holiday season.
That’s not surprising, as the UFC’s legal wranglings in New York will likely keep the Madison Square Garden date in limbo for the near term. So there’s really no point making an issue out of a Jones fight in New York with Cormier until the case takes a clearer direction.
For now, Cormier can relax with his family, knowing that the UFC was happy to have him to pick up the ball and run with it while Jones was mired in legal issues.
“The appreciation for what I’ve done so far in my career in the UFC, it showed.”