No matter what the doubters say, Daniel Cormier is the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight champion.
Sure it may be by circumstance, but "DC" wasn't the one who opted to crash into a car and leave the scene of an accident. Jon Jones was stripped of his title, and Cormier's incredible accomplishments after that fact should not be undermined anymore.
Cormier defended UFC gold for the first time -- which has long been the distinction between a true champion and a farce -- last night (Sat., October 3, 2015) in a sensational UFC 192 main event against Alexander Gustafsson, live on pay-per-view (PPV) from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.
The fight was an exciting back-and-forth affair, which culminated in the highest output of significant strikes in Light Heavyweight history.
After a first round that was dominated by Cormier's wrestling, the champion showed off his impressive striking arsenal the remaining four rounds, opting to play right into Gustafsson's game plan.
Even though "DC's" coaches advised him to look for the takedown, Cormier was out to prove he is not one-dimensional, and can strike with the elite at 205-pounds.
Speaking of elite...
The return of Jon Jones is imminent, and Daniel Cormier will likely have his rematch in the coming months.
With "Bones" avoiding jail time with a recent plea deal (more on that here), UFC brass could reinstate the former 205-pound kingpin in the coming days, and set up a monumental title rematch with Cormier.
Jones outclassed Cormier the first time around, so it remains to be seen if the current champ would have anything to offer the former Light Heavyweight champ upon his return.
If Jones' return takes longer than expected, Ryan Bader will have to get the next title shot by default, as he earned his fifth straight victory at UFC 192 by defeating a sluggish Rashad Evans in the former champion's return from a two-year long injury layoff.
"Darth" and Cormier already share mutual disdain for one another dating back to UFC 187, so even though Bader's style is not aesthetically pleasing, UFC brass could hypothetically sell their title fight anyhow.
After the two aforementioned options, there is slim pickings in the 205-pound division. While not directly next in line, Anthony Johnson, Glover Teixeira, Ovince St. Preux, and Patrick Cummins could all hypothetically fight for a title sometime in the near future with a premier victory.
For now, Cormier will heal his wounds and bask in the glory of being a UFC champion, but be warned, Jon Jones looms large even on a night of great success for "DC."
For complete results from UFC 192: "Cormier vs. Gustafsson," including play-by-play updates, click here.