With Jon Jones stripped of his title and suspended indefinitely, his former title challenger Daniel Cormier will receive another shot at the belt, only months after his first title opportunity in January. At UFC 187 on May 23, he will face Anthony Johnson for the now vacant championship gold, and the wrestling standout wasted no time to get under Johnson's skin.
On last night's edition of UFC Tonight, he fired his first shots:
"If you told me a few years ago that I would fight Anthony Johnson for a UFC championship I would say package the belt up and send it to San Jose," Cormier said Tuesday on UFC Tonight."
Cormier went on to question Johnson's heart and brought up losses from Rumble's first UFC run, when the light-heavyweight contender was still competing at welterweight.
"It's a tough fight," Cormier said. "Rumble Johnson's a fantastic fighter. He has tremendous power and he's got a confidence about himself right now. But I want to tell you guys right now, at the end of the day, Anthony 'Rumble' Johnson is who he is. [...] At the core of Anthony Johnson, Anthony's the guy who got submitted by Josh Koscheck. Anthony's the guy that tapped out before Vitor Belfort got the choke in. At the core of him, he is who he is. I just have to go out and find that."
"Rumbles" response via Twitter followed up promptly.
I'm gonna keep my mouth closed with everything I just heard and smile lol— Anthony Johnson (@Anthony_Rumble) April 29, 2015
Transcription via MMAFighting.com