Daniel Cormier: Islam Makhachev Is ‘Right’ For Not Wanting Rematches With Charles Oliveira, Arman Tsarukyan

DC reacts to Makhachev's plan of action.

Dc Makhachev
(via @islam_makhachev - Instagram)

Islam Makhachev isn’t very interested in fighting former foes and Daniel Cormier thinks he knows why.

The UFC Lightweight Champion is coming two straight wins over fellow champ Alexander Volkanovski, defeating him once again at UFC 294 in October. Makhachev was actually supposed to rematch another in Charles Oliveira, but the Brazilian backed out due to injury.

Oliveira, as well as top contender Arman Tsarukyan might not find it so easy to secure a rematch with Makhachev, who has seemingly made up his mind to fight a new opponent in BMF Champion Justin Gaethje.

DC: ‘I Think It’s Right That He Doesn’t Wanna Fight Rematches’

Former two-division champion Daniel Cormier understands the reason behind Makhachev’s controversial decision to opt out of these fights.

“We’re missing why Islam says he doesn’t want rematches and why I think he’s right if I’m being honest,” Cormier said on his YouTube channel. “That probably comes as no surprise to you guys because you’re gonna say that I’m always biased towards Islam and everything, but I think he’s right. I’m gonna tell you why I think he’s right for the simple fact that when the reporter then followed up with Islam, ‘can you see himself doing this until you’re 40?’ Islam said ‘no, maybe a couple more years’.

“That’s why I think it’s right that he doesn’t wanna fight rematches because if he’s only gonna be around for a couple more years, do we want to see him continue to recycle opponents or do we wanna see him in there with different people time and time again? That’s why I think he’s right. He said only a couple more years of fighting and if we have learned anything, Khabib [Nurmagomedov] walked away at the height of his popularity, at the height of his dominance, at the height of the sport, and never looked back. He never looked back.”

Makhachev could potentially share the same fate as his predecessor and teammate Nurmagomedov— all without rematching fighters he has already beaten. 

“So when you hear Makhachev saying, I’ve got a couple years left, do we really wanna see him fighting guys like Charles, who has proven to be the second best in the division? At least, according to their first fight. Or Arman Tsarukyan who he fought a long time ago, who has proven to be one of the best lightweights in the world? Do we wanna see that? Especially when guys don’t fight as frequently as they used to.”

Cormier Lists Potential Title Challengers For Makhachev

DC believes Makhachev has a larger selection to choose from, outside of sequels with Oliveira and Tsarukyan.

“If Makhachev is fighting twice a year and he’s fighting for only a couple more years, that’s four fights. We’d like to see him fight a Justin Gaethje, Dustin Poirier, Michael Chandler maybe, Mateusz Gamrot or one of the other great young challengers that are coming up that we haven’t seen him in there with before.”

‘I’m Not Saying That Those Guys Are Not Warranted’

Don’t get it twisted though, Daniel Cormier isn’t saying Charles Oliveira and Arman Tsarukyan aren’t worthy of a title shot.

“Now I’m not saying I’m not gonna tap into a fight with him and ‘Do Bronx’ or with him and Tsarukyan. I’m not saying that those guys are not warranted a title championship opportunity. If they are giving it to them, they have earned that.

“For me, I’m like, well, if it’s not gonna be a long time, then maybe we should see if he’s the guy that can keep that next wave of guys from dethroning him,” Cormier explained.

Published on December 11, 2023 at 2:27 pm
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