UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier is still recovering from a back injury that will likely keep him sidelined for more than half of 2019 and there is still no word on who will get the next crack at his title.
Cormier has made it clear that he wants a showdown with former heavyweight champion and current WWE superstar Brock Lesnar, who started working towards a comeback to fighting last year but hasn’t given any indication recently if he still intends on returning to the UFC.
Even UFC president Dana White has said that there have been no talks with Lesnar about a potential return, which is why the promotion may have to go to option No. 2 — a rematch with former heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic.
Now Miocic has been banging the drum for months that he deserved an automatic rematch with Cormier after he was the longest reigning champion in the history of the division but his requests have largely fallen on deaf ears with the potential Lesnar fight looming overhead.
While nothing has been decided at this time, UFC color commentator Joe Rogan made his choice during a recent episode of his podcast where he advocated for Miocic getting the rematch against Cormier.
“I get the Brock Lesnar appeal. I would rather see Stipe,” Rogan said. “First of all, out of respect, cause Stipe he defended the title more than any human being that’s ever held it. He’s the No. 1 guy in the heavyweight division. So you have to rate him the greatest heavyweight of all time. If you look about accomplishments, he’s the greatest UFC heavyweight of all time in terms of accomplishments. Just because he’s done it [three] times.
“DC beat him obviously, if you had to rank him right now like 1 through 10, DC’s No. 1 cause he’s the champ and he knocked him out. To say he’s No. 2 would be silly. But to say the all time most accomplished heavyweight, that’s what Stipe is. The all time most accomplished heavyweight is Stipe.”
It’s tough to argue against Rogan’s logic with Miocic defending the heavyweight title more than anyone else in UFC history.
It’s also worth noting that Miocic holds wins over both the No. 2 and No. 3 ranked contenders at heavyweight after mauling Francis Ngannou for five rounds and knocking out Junior dos Santos in their last meeting.
Just based on those factors alone, Miocic would seem like the obvious choice to get the next shot at Cormier’s title but there is still a chance that Lesnar leap frogs everybody if he decides to return.
For now it’s all a waiting game as Cormier continues to recover from his back injury with the heavyweight title staying idle until he makes his return later this year.