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Daniel Cormier reflects on Jon Jones rivalry: ‘We don’t have to be friends’

The rivalry between UFC light heavyweights Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier came to a boiling point last month when the two met in a highly-anticipated championship rematch at UFC 214 in Anaheim, California. Jones ended up knocking out “DC” via third-round head kick to reclaim his 205-pound crown and improve his career record against Cormier to 2-0.

After losing to Jones for a second time, Cormier understandably went into hiding. The former UFC light heavyweight champion remained there until returning to his desk on UFC Tonight earlier this week (shown above) and revealing his current outlook on his rivalry with Jones, UFC 214, and his future in the sport.

“I believe he’s being genuine,” Cormier said of Jones’ demeanor after the rematch. “I do believe that he is trying to turn over a new leaf. I think he’s trying to show that he’s a different person than he was in the past. With that being said, friendship would be very difficult for us to achieve because of our history. And I’m OK with that, I’ve always said that.”

“We don’t have to be friends,” Cormier added. “I’ve always respected him for the competitor that he is. I even congratulated him for getting the job done on July 29th. But, in terms of going forward, we will be professional because we have to until the cage door closes again.”

Cormier, 38, intends to resume his career despite another crushing loss to “Bones,” but understands that only time can heal the wounds he suffered at UFC 214.

“It takes time to get over something that’s so big, especially when you unsuccessful in such a big event,” Cormier said. “But, day by day, you get better. You keep fighting, you keep learning that there are things that are much more important than the competition. And you gotta try to get through it.”

Assuming Cormier stays put at light heavyweight he’ll have to win at least two significant fights in a row to earn a trilogy fight with Jones. And if that day ever comes, you better believe the two rivals will take over right where they left off.

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