UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier was slated to defend his UFC light heavyweight title against Volkan Oezdemir, but it is well known now that Volkan Oezdemir was arrested and charged with aggravated battery in Florida as a result of a bar fight in August where Oezdemir allegedly hit an individual. Later was released on $10,000 bond.
Volkan Oezdemir is in hot water as it appeared that the UFC was targeting a title shot for him at UFC 220 in January against the current light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier. Now it seems Oezdemir legal troubles jeopardizes this plan.
DC appeared on The Anik & Florian Podcast (transcript courtesy of MMA Fighting) stated that he is also ready and willing to defend against anyone else like Alexander Gustafsson or Ovince Saint Preux next if Oezdemir’s legal troubles delayed his come back.
“Of course, I’d fight any of these guys. It doesn’t matter. This guy’s on the longest win streak in the division, so he was getting the title shot, but if this trouble is gonna keep him out of the opportunity, I’ll just go to the next guy. So, of course, I’d fight Gustafsson, and someone told me yesterday that Team Ovince Saint Preux was like, ‘We want a title fight because we’ve got a good winning streak too.’ Whoever is winning gets the title shot, that’s just the way it is. I don’t care who it is.”
In a rematch with Jon Jones at UFC 214, Cormier lost the bout via knockout in the third round, but later Cormier was reinstated as champion following Jon Jones’ drug test failure.
Since then Cormier is calling out Oezdemir and said he is something new and different.
“It’s tough to be going through this type of thing, especially at this time when you’re on the cusp of your biggest moment of your career. I don’t know what happened. You’ve got to not be doing things that are wrong or put yourself in these situations where stuff can go sideways. You’ve got to try to stay out of those positions.
“Maybe it was self-defense but because he is who is is, it’s much worse because he has the ability to sleep dudes that are trying to hit him. You never know what’s happening but even these run-ins, they’re really unneeded, especially when you’re a young guy as Volkan is and you’re on the cusp of something so big for the first time in your career.”
Oezdemir could potentially hit jail due to of his battery charges, and it seems like UFC would not follow January title fight. But Cormier still hustling and interested to compete at UFC 220 showdown.
“I’ve been waiting for the final go ahead. Obviously, this throws a wrench into those plans, when we see what happens to Oezdemir. It’s kind of all fluid right now because we’ve got to see what happens with this guy. Alexander Gustafsson was never gonna be right now anyway, I think he may be dealing with some things. If it has to be him then I guess the fight will be a little bit later in the year, but I’d love to compete in Boston.”