Daniel Cormier: “I Am Not Going To Be Stripped Of The Belt That I’ve Defended With My All For Three And a Half Years.”
Current two-division champion Daniel Cormier was set to strip off his UFC light heavyweight title on Saturday night as soon Jon Jones, and Alexander Gustafsson throws the first strike inside the Octagon in the main headliner of UFC 232 PPV event.
Well, that’s not going to happen as Cormier doesn’t want to go down in the history book as a champion that was stripped of the gold. Instead ‘DC’ decided to relinquish the crown voluntarily.
In a statement with ESPN, Cormier said he decided to give up the title to the UFC on its own.
“Today I am going to relinquish the UFC light heavyweight title,” Cormier told ESPN. “I am not going to be stripped of the belt that I’ve defended with my all for three and a half years. Being stripped of a title suggests you’ve done something wrong, and I haven’t.
“I’d rather walk away this way, with my head held high as it always has been, than have the history books say I was stripped. I’ve defended this title this year. I was approached with the idea of fighting at heavyweight, so I took it. I fought three times in 2018. No champion has been more active than me. I am the fighter of the year. My story and my legacy will not include me being stripped of a title. They can have it.”
Daniel Cormier told @arielhelwani that he has decided to give up the 205-pound title rather than have it stripped from him once Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson fight for the belt at UFC 232. https://t.co/sHBB8MDoUA
— ESPN (@espn) December 28, 2018
‘DC’ has been champion of the light heavyweight division since his UFC 214 showdown with Jon Jones back in July of 2017. Jones went on to defeat Cormier; however, the victory overturned to no contest after it was revealed ‘Bones’ tested positive for steroids, that led the promotion to awarded the title back to Daniel Cormier. Earlier this year Cormier defended his title with a second-round TKO win over Volkan Oezdemir at UFC 220. This past July Cormier’s future as a 205-pound champion become cloudy when he went on to knocked out heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic at UFC 226 to become a two-division champion simultaneously. Moreover he also successfully defended his heavyweight title recently when he scored a second-round submission win over Derrick Lewis at UFC 230.
Cormier already announced his retirement from sports once he hit his 40th birthday this March. “DC” want to end his career with a high profile fight against Brock Lesnar, of course, it comes with a massive payday as well.