Daniel Cormier really doesn’t know what’s going happen to his mixed martial arts (MMA) career following his title rematch with Stipe Miocic this weekend at UFC 241.
Cormier could end up losing his first bout at heavyweight and return the UFC heavyweight title that he took from Miocic last year, or he could power through the former champion one more time and solidify himself as the greatest UFC heavyweight of all time.
Either way, the 40-year-old superstar has absolutely no idea when or how he’s going to retire from the sport of MMA. All “DC” is trying to do is to step away from the game on his own terms.
“I think what’s going to be the most difficult for me is I’m going to have to let go when I can still compete,” Cormier said earlier this week at UFC 241's media day (via MMA Junkie). “Worst case scenario, if I was to lose to Stipe this weekend I could go, ‘I want a rematch’, and I would probably get it immediately. But if I lose it would probably mean I’m close to getting done. Or I could win, and I could be like, ‘I’m going to go on to the next dude and the next dude’ and then eventually somebody is going to get you.
“Either you get shown the door, or you choose when you make your exit. I want to be the guy who decides. I want to be like Georges St-Pierre. Georges went out on his own terms.”
Despite Cormier’s ongoing flirtation with retirement, the reigning UFC heavyweight champion will still need to defend his belt this weekend at UFC 241. And even though “DC” was successful in knocking out Miocic in their first encounter back at UFC 226 the seasoned veteran understands that the rematch may be more difficult.
“I think he’s going to make some adjustments,” Cormier said of Miocic. “You can go back very far in his career, and he does a lot of things really well. Those things he does really well are what’s carried him this whole time, so I don’t imagine he would change those things much. You look at a guy, and you think it’s the finished product, but you look and see what’s changed. I’ve made him, in my mind, so good it’s insane.”
With a win over Miocic at UFC 241 it’s quite possible that Cormier drops back down in weight to take one final stab at rival and current light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. Heck, “DC” may even decide to defend his heavyweight strap against surging knockout artist Francis Ngannou, who took out Cormier’s top teammate, Cain Velasquez, earlier this year.
Still, with so many options on the table, the UFC heavyweight champion is taking his fighting future one step at a time.
“I don’t know,” Cormier said. “I’m trying to live in the here and now. I’m living in the here and now. We’ll see what happens.”
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 241 fight card below, starting with the UFC Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+.