Friday, January 22, 2021

Daniel Cormier Says Retiring As UFC Champion Puts Him Alongside Michael Jordan & Peyton Manning

Daniel Cormier knows the significance of walking out on top.

Cormier plans to retire from MMA competition after his trilogy bout with Stipe Miocic regardless of the outcome. The two are set to trade leather a third time in the main event of UFC 252 on Aug. 15. Cormier is challenging Miocic for the UFC heavyweight title.

‘DC’ Says He’d Be Right With Jordan & Manning With UFC Title Win In Final Bout

Speaking to reporters during the UFC 252 pre-fight press conference, Cormier discussed what defeating Miocic on Saturday night would do for his legacy (h/t MMAFighting).

“In MMA, yes, but I think it puts you right alongside the greatest sports athletes of all time,” he told reporters at the pre-fight press conference for UFC 252, which takes place on Saturday at UFC APEX in Las Vegas. “Michael Jordan won with the Bulls when they beat the Jazz. Unfortunately, he came back. I won’t come back.

“Peyton Manning won a Super Bowl in his last season. It would put me in that type of sphere, with some of the greatest athletes that have ever competed across any sport. When I win on Saturday, I will retire that way.”

Cormier and Miocic haven’t competed since their Aug. 2019 rematch. Miocic scored a fourth-round TKO victory to regain the heavyweight gold. Back in July 2018, “DC” struck first by knocking Miocic out in the opening frame to become a UFC “champ-champ.”

If Cormier can defeat Miocic a second time, he’ll become a two-time UFC heavyweight champion. The accolade would add to his UFC light heavyweight and Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix titles. It would certainly be one memorable way to go out. With that said, UFC president Dana White isn’t convinced that Cormier will hang up his gloves whether he wins or loses on Saturday night.

Time will tell what Daniel Cormier truly decides to do but it’s been one unforgettable ride to this point.