Former two-division UFC champion Daniel Cormier has given some advice to newly crowned welterweight king Leon Edwards following his title-winning performance at UFC 278, and Jorge Masvidal did not take kindly to it.
Cormier had a front-row seat this past weekend as Edwards secured his place in the history books as only the second fighter out of the United Kingdom to hold UFC gold, following in the footsteps of Michael “The Count” Bisping.
How did Edwards write that memorable chapter of his career? By delivering a head-kick knockout worthy of a firm Joe Rogan grip on Cormier’s shoulder as an unconscious Kamaru Usman collapsed to the Octagon floor.
While the celebrations in Edwards’ camp and across the pond are ongoing, talk has begun to turn towards plans for the Brit’s first title defense, which is expected to come in the form of a trilogy against the recently fallen Usman.
But whilst “Rocky” has his immediate gaze on his two-time opponent, he’s also addressed the possibility of defending the belt against a number of other names in the division down the line.
As well as suggesting that he’d be willing to give former foe Nate Diaz a shot should the Stockton native defeat Khamzat Chimaev next month, Edwards has expressed a desire to finally share the cage with longtime rival Jorge Masvidal.
But “DC” has told the champ not to give “Gamebred” the satisfaction of an opportunity at the gold.
Cormier: Masvidal Did Not Say Edwards’ Name When He Was The Man
During the latest episode of ESPN MMA’s DC & RC show, Cormier assessed what could await Edwards as his reign gets underway.
Pointing towards the Englishman’s remarks about Masvidal, which saw him admit that he’d offer the Miami native a title shot should he rebound with a win next time out, the former heavyweight and light heavyweight champ advised “Rocky” to take a different route with Masvidal, and give him a taste of his own medicine.
“Bro, don’t fight him because for two years when he was the man, he could not say your name,” Cormier said. “All of a sudden, he’s like, ‘If you become the champ.’ … He should not fight Jorge Masvidal. He literally should just big league him and not even say his name.
“Why would you do that when a guy snuck you backstage but then never fought you? Then, all of a sudden, you’re the man and he wants to fight you,” Cormier added. (h/t Sportskeeda MMA)
The animosity between Masvidal and Edwards stems from a 2019 backstage altercation in London. After words were exchanged, “Gamebred” delivered a flurry of punches, later coined a “three piece and a soda.”
While Edwards was initially set to get his shot at revenge last December at UFC 269, Masvidal was forced out after suffering an injury in training.
Despite the former two-time title challenger’s losing form, it’s clear that Edwards is still keen to get his own back on Masvidal for the attack, even if it requires granting him what many would brand an undeserved title shot.
While that has no doubt been music to the ears of Masvidal, the same certainly can’t be said for Cormier’s latest remarks…
Masvidal Hits Back At Cormier On Twitter
Having seen “DC” attempt to put a dent in his title hopes, the #9-ranked welterweight contender took to Twitter and laid into the former multi-weight UFC kingpin, accusing him of being “butt hurt” about being denied an interview prior to Masvidal’s most recent outing.
“Guess you’re still butt hurt since I didn’t do the interview you requested on your weak YouTube channel during my fight week,” Masvidal wrote. “I know you needed my name to produce some sort of views since Ariel went solo and you became a has been. Just make sure when Dana calls and you tells 1/2
“2/2 you to promote the biggest fight the current champ can make in the division which is me, wear your best suit from DXL and make sure you do as your told like a good boy. Maybe you’ll get a treat from your master #reasonpeoplewatchonmute #fakelifecoach #brokeadvice“
Assessing that the tweet had come from the mind of Masvidal’s manager Malki Kawa, Cormier tailored his response for the First Round Management CEO, whilst insisting that he stands by his remarks on Edwards vs. Masvidal.
“Jorge you’ve always been the man, Malik stay off his page. I stand by what I said,” Cormier responded. “You don’t get unlimited title fights Malki, beat Durinho get to 1-3 in last 4 and maybe get a title shot. See Malki now you got me disrespecting my friend Jorge”
Interestingly, Cormier did suggest that a victory over Gilbert Burns would need to happen before Masvidal enters the title conversation, which is effectively the same stance as the new champion.
Do you agree with Daniel Cormier?