UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier is slated to defend his title against Anthony Johnson in a rematch at UFC 210. But even with this daunting task at hand, the thought of getting even with bitter rival Jon Jones still lingers in his mind.
“DC” almost had his shot at UFC 200 last July, only to have Jones pull out due to a failed drug test. After the incident, UFC president Dana White is no longer confident with having “Bones” headline a big event.
With that in consideration, Cormier says he is not willing to make this fight co-headline just any card. Not unless it is bannered by the company’s current top draw.
“I’m not going to fight Jones just on some card. It would have to be a certain type of card if we were going to take a co-main event type of role,” Cormier said during his most recent appearance on The MMA Hour (via MMA Fighting). “But therein lies another issue. I’ll put it out there: Jon and I will not fight in the co-main event to anyone but Conor McGregor. Right? That’s the only way that makes sense, right?”
“So there’s the problem. Now you have a whole bunch of guys who make a whole bunch of money on one fight card. So it’s like, what’re you going to do?”
Cormier is very confident that he will be able to beat Jones when they do meet inside the Octagon for the second time. In fact, he says he even tailored his career in a way that would make the rematch more possible.
“It always has been. I said after I lost to him the first time and we were supposed to fight in , I said give me the two toughest guys the division has to offer,” Cormier said. “At that time it was (Alexander) Gustafsson and ‘Rumble.’ I’ll beat them so that I can get back to this guy. I did it in a year, and I was ready to fight in April. Then I got the injury and everything that happened in July didn’t allow for us to fight, so I fought Anderson (Silva).”
“I’m like, just get me back to where I need to be inside the Octagon against Jones. That’s really what it all leads to.”
“And the truth is, now it’s about my legacy, too,” he continued. “Title defenses, wins with being the champion, that all matters to me. So, it’s all part of the journey, but at the end of the day, I do want to get back to Jones.”
UFC 210 takes place on April 8th in Buffalo, New York.