Daniel Cormier open to fight Francis Ngannou for title
If the UFC decides to vacate Stipe Miocic’s heavyweight title, Daniel Cormier and Francis Ngannou would be more than happy to compete for it.
MMA returned this weekend, as fans around the world got to see UFC 249 go down in Jacksonville, Florida. There were several storylines that came out of the event, the – literally speaking – biggest one being Francis Ngannou cementing his place at the top of the heavyweight division, with a 20 second KO over Jairzinho Rozenstruik. That was Ngannou’s fourth straight, first round knockout win, though he can’t expect an immediate title shot.
As of now, a trilogy bout is expected to take place between current title holder Stipe Miocic and former champ Daniel Cormier. There has, however, been a rift between Miocic and the UFC. The heavyweight champion is uneasy about a quick return, with the current pandemic making a full training camp hard to secure, but also because Miocic works as a first responder. Should the UFC decide to strip Miocic of his title, then Cormier welcomes a bout with Ngannou, with the two of them fighting for a vacant title.
“If Stipe won’t fight, then Francis Ngannou has earned a title fight,” Daniel Cormier said on the UFC 249 post-fight show on ESPN, transcribed by MMAjunkie. “If somebody is fighting Francis Ngannou for the title, it’s going to be me. All respect in the world to Francis Ngannou, but I’m not afraid of anyone. I’ll fight anybody on any planet. I love Francis, I think he’s a sweetheart person. I would love to do my trilogy with Stipe Miocic, but if Stipe won’t fight, they’re going to take his belt just like Henry (Cejudo) gave up his and they’re going to make a fight between Francis and I for the belt. It’s as simple as that.
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“I would rather fight the trilogy fight with Stipe Miocic, I think that for everything we have meant to each other with me winning one and him winning one. That would be great for me. But if he doesn’t want to fight I want to fight my last fight. I want to fight whoever. And if it’s Francis Ngannou then I guess that’s who it’s going to be.”
As of now, there are few that would be eager to face Ngannou. All of his wins in the UFC have come via finish, nine out of ten by way of T/KO. In his current four fight winning streak, he has finished former UFC champions Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos. Cormier, on the other hand, hasn’t fought since losing the heavyweight title to Miocic via TKO in August of last year. Cormier is considerd one of the greatest heavyweights of all time, though, and he has proved time and time again to be up for any challenge.
UFC president Dana White is clearly frustrated with Miocic, and if the UFC decides to move on without him, one can’t deny Cormier and Ngannou being the most deserving of a title shot.