Over the weekend, Chael Sonnen retired from MMA after getting stopped by Lyoto Machida at Bellator 222. It was the latest in a run of high-profile retirements from the sport and, according to one champion, it may not be the last of the summer.
Speaking with TMZ Sports recently, UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier revealed that his scheduled rematch with Stipe Miocic at UFC 241 may be the final fight of his esteemed career.
“I always said that I would fight until I turn 40, which was a card on March 2nd,” Cormier said. “I couldn’t make that one so if I hold true to what I was saying, then this would be the final one. I don’t anticipate fighting much past this. I just want to go out there and do my thing. Ultimately, I know what led to me having trouble in wrestling. There are so many differences in wrestling, I was like ‘last time I’m ever gonna weigh in, last time I’m ever gonna do this.’ I don’t need to be looking at it as if it’s a weight off my shoulders. I get the opportunity to prepare again. I get the opportunity to go chase another gold belt, a new gold belt. So I’ve got to really be living that and enjoy that.”
Cormier had been adamant that he would be retiring from MMA before his 40th birthday. However, a back injury and waiting for Brock Lesnar, caused Cormier to push back that hard date. The Lesnar fight never came to fruition though as Lesnar was given a better offer to return to the WWE. Once that happened, the UFC went ahead and booked Cormier to defend the title against the man he won it from in the first place, Stipe Miocic. But even though he had little trouble with Miocic the first time, knocking him out in the first round, Cormier believes the rematch could be a horse of a different color.
“I think he’s gonna be upset,” Cormier said. “I think he might be a little bit emotional but I truly believe he’s gonna be a better version of himself. I don’t think for a second that he’s gonna make the same mistakes that he did this time. I think it’ll be a much more difficult fight. There were some areas that Stipe could have done better and I think his coach is a fantastic coach so he’ll go and address those issues so I’m gonna have a much tougher fight on my hands this time.”
Miocic may well be upset. He’s certainly been vocal on social media since losing the belt, calling out Cormier constantly. That struck a chord with Cormier who lamented Miocic’s “entitled” attitude, which in turn aroused Miocic’s ire. Where once there was respect, now there is antipathy, and Cormier says that if this is going to be his last fight, he’s planning on walking out a winner, especially since the last time he fought in Anaheim, things did not go his way.
“I get this done again. I feel like I will prepare myself and get ready to fight come August 17. If you asked me today? I probably couldn’t beat Stipe Miocic. I’m out of shape, I’m barely getting started. I’m just working, trying to drop off the extra pounds. I’ve been living a very, very cushy life since November. I’ve been working television, enjoying my family, coaching wrestling. So I’ve got some work to do to get back where I need to be. . .
“UFC 241 in Anaheim, the Honda Center. The last time I was there, I got it wrong. Now I get to go make that right. I want a better memory of that arena.”
UFC 241 takes place on Aug. 17.
Bellator 222. Rory MacDonald retains title with strong showing against Neiman Gracie.
Bellator 222. Kyoji Horiguchi claims Bellator gold with second win over Darrion Caldwell.
Retirement. Chael Sonnen talks retirement after Bellator 222: ‘I fired my last bullet’.
EPO. T.J. Dillashaw opens up on failed drug test: ‘It’s hard not to hate yourself a little a bit’.
Dreams. Khabib Nurmagomedov still holding out hope for legacy fight against Georges St-Pierre.
Farewell tour. Fedor Emelianenko inks multi-fight deal with Bellator for ‘retirement tour’.
Bellator 222 post-fight show.
Fighter’s pick fights.
T.J.’s interview with Chael.
Israel heading back to Nigeria.
Woodley on Cejudo.
Junior dos Santos being a great guy.
Severe MMA. Discussing Aaron Pico, Rory MacDonald, Kyoji and the rest of Bellator 222.
Pull No Punches. An interview with Leslie Smith.
At least you grew enough balls to @ me this time on IG @ColbyCovMMA I like all the begging I’ve been seeing from you now just step it up a little bit more then I’ll decide when and where I want to leave your dead body ✌
— KAMARU USMAN (@USMAN84kg) June 14, 2019
Lmao I do have to give you props. No one in UFC history is hated more than your corny ass. Even the women want to fuck u up. like I said keep begging and maybe I’ll give you the whopping your father failed to do https://t.co/0CgQRy8HOl
— KAMARU USMAN (@USMAN84kg) June 14, 2019
Cool Father’s day post.
I feel him on that one
— Chris Weidman (@chrisweidman) June 15, 2019
I’d watch the hell out of that.
Yeah, it’s pretty cool.
Absolutely loving this cross promotion matchmaking. It’s a thing of the future. Makes total sense and can only lead to be conditions for fighters of time. pic.twitter.com/n6GvzLQZZB
— Damien Brown (@beatdown155) June 16, 2019
Juan Archuleta moving up in the world.
Askren still bodying watermelons.
Tecia Torres (10-4) vs. Marina Rodriguez (11-0-1); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Raulian Paiva (18-2) vs. Rogerio Bontorin (15-1); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Ashlee Evans-Smith (6-4) vs. Taila Santos (15-1); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Geraldo de Freitas (12-4) vs. Chris Gutierrez (13-3-1); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Rachael Ostovich (4-5) vs. Veronica Macedo (5-3-1); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Enrique Barzola (15-4-1) vs. Bobby Moffett (14-4); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Rafael Fiziev (6-1) vs. Alex da Silva (20-2); UFC Uruguay, Aug. 10.
Matt Mitrione (13-6, 1 NC) vs. Sergei Kharitonov (28-6, 2 NC); Bellator, Aug. 24.
Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.
Does Cormier retire after the Miocic rematch?
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