Daniel Cormier On Ilia Topuria: ‘I’m Okay With Him Going Right Into A Title Fight’

DC doesn't see any problem with "El Matador" leapfrogging other contenders to a title fight.

Daniel Cormier On Ilia Topuria
Daniel Cormier On Ilia Topuria - Image credit @UFC Twitter @ESPNMMA Youtube
  • Daniel Cormier is confident about Ilia Topuria jumping straight into title contention
  • DC doesn’t see any weakness in “El Matador”

Former UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier was in awe of Ilia Topuria’s incredible UFC run. The way DC sees it, “El Matador” is already a deserving title fight candidate.

Ilia is title Fight-Ready

Speaking to Megan Olivi backstage for ESPN at UFC Jacksonville after Topuria’s dominant decision win over Josh Emmett, Cormier explained why he thinks the 26-year-old has proven that he could match up well against either Yair Rodriguez or Alexander Volkanovski.

“I’m okay with him going right into a title fight,” Cormier said of Topuria. “I think he is that ready. This kid showed conditioning over 25 minutes, he showed an ability to compete everywhere and he really did just dominate and I think that he matches up relatively well against all of them, the technical fight between him and Yair would be crazy but then also to watch him fight the champion, Volkanovski with their skill sets, fantastic fights across the board at 145.”

The future of MMA

Cormier further noted that he sees no holes in Topuria’s game at this point. If anything, DC said “El Matador” possessed all the qualities of a generational MMA fighter.

“He’s young, he’s like 25 years old or 26 years old, he hasn’t fought much. The only thing that you could even take as a negative was he didn’t do the fighter meetings because he was cutting weight, that’s literally the only misstep,” Cormier added.

“[But] he had to get his weight down and that’s not really a misstep, you can’t judge him harshly in anything that he did over the course of the first Main Event week that he’s ever had. He’s calm, he’s collected, his demeanor outside of the Octagon translates so well inside the Octagon. He’s at the high guard, he’s in there, he sets everything up, he weighs nothing,” he continued. “This dude is just… he really is next-level and he is the evolution of mixed martial arts.”

Topuria is expected to break into the featherweight division’s Top 5. He is currently on a 6-0 run in the UFC and he is willing to wait for a title shot or clash with Max Holloway for his next fight.

Published on June 25, 2023 at 12:13 pm
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