Daniel Cormier's Willingness to Stay Busy in UFC Is as Admirable as It Is Risky

One of the many, many things to like about Daniel Cormier is his simple desire to scrap.

We saw this inclination in February after Rashad Evans was forced out of their scheduled UFC 170 fight with an injury and Cormier publicly cajoled matchmakers into finding him someone, anyone else to put his fists on instead of scratching him from the card.

Eventually, they dredged up Patrick Cummins, but more on that in a minute.

Cormier’s fight-early, fight-often policy was on display again Wednesday, as Bleacher Report’s Jeremy Botter reported the fight company is targeting a bout for him against former Strikeforce champion Rafael “FeijaoCavalcante at UFC 175.

Social media critics have jumped all over it, casting it as a step back for the former Olympic wrestling team captain, who is now 3-0 in the UFC and 14-0 overall.

Assuming the fight comes together, though, Cormier’s message is clear: Confronted by a reality where both Glover Teixeira and Alexander Gustafsson are ahead of him in the light heavyweight pecking order, he’d rather stay busy and paid than wait for the contender carousel to complete its year-long turn.

Taking on a backsliding, but still-dangerous hitter like Feijao is a risky move for a guy who’s already basically assured a future shot at the 205-pound title. However, it’s also very easy to admire.

It speaks to the man’s work ethic and a core belief in himself that he’s among the best light heavyweights in the world. Perhaps to him it doesn’t matter who he fights, or when, since he thinks he’s going to beat them all anyway.

Also, he doesn’t have all day to wait.

Cormier turned 35 years old a week ago and—as talented as he is—he’s obviously working with a limited window in which to ply his trade. He commands somewhere in the neighborhood of $160,000 to fight for the UFCMMA Junkie reported that his payout for blistering Cummins was $80,000 to show and that much again to winand those two factors combined likely make the equation very simple for him.

He could either sit at home watching the clock tick or roll the dice and stand to perhaps double his yearly salary to date.

In addition, there is the small matter of the Cummins fight, which ultimately failed to tell spectators much we didn’t already know about Cormier.

It was sweet confirmation to see him look fit and capable at 205 pounds, but after the UFC did its best to prop the former barista up as a legit threat, the end result bordered on depressing and did little to satisfy our curiosity about how high Cormier might fly.

It’s possible the competitor in Cormier secretly left UFC 170 feeling much the same way.

He’d trained for Evans and expected to get a stiff test from a perennial contender and former champion. Instead, he got an unsatisfying gimme fight against a talented but woefully unprepared kid.

It was easy money, but the experience may not have been particularly instructive for him in what to expect from his new life at light heavyweight.

To that end, Cavalcante would be a better way to scratch the itch.

The 33-year-old Brazilian got back into the win column during his last UFC fight, a first-round stoppage over Igor Pokrajac last November. He’s been up and down since winning the Strikeforce title in August of 2010, but would be a worthy opponent and—if nothing else—a far more interesting litmus test than Cummins ever could have been.

At this point, it would be easy for Cormier to make some wise investments with his $160,000 and cool his heels until the Jon Jones-Teixeira-Gustafsson meat grinder spits out a winner for him to face near the end of the year.

It's commendableif a little bit scarythat he’s probably going to do the opposite.

You know what they say about great opportunity, though. It all comes up rosy for Cormier if he dispatches Feijao with the same ease as previous opponents like Cummins, Roy Nelson and Frank Mir.

If the unthinkable happens and he loses, however, it would constitute a full-scale disaster for a guy who has just as little time to waste rebuilding his image as waiting on the sideline.

The bottom line is that Cormier is one of the more exciting prospects to grace the 205-pound division in some time. Fans want to see him fight and he looks intent on granting our wish. In a sport that so often revels in the fearlessness of guys like Nick Diaz and gameness of dudes like Donald Cerrone, Cormier’s confidence deserves its due too.

I kind of love it.

I just hope it works out for him.

view original article >>

Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Back from ACL Injury, Georgi Karakhanyan Wants to Stay Busy, Starting with Bellator 155

  • 12 days ago
  • 8 views

Finally bouncing back from an ACL injury, Georgi Karakhanyan wants to stay busy starting with Bellator 155 on Friday night. read news >>

UFC Fight Night 88 Preview: Thomas Almeida vs. Gody Garbrandt

  • 9 days ago
  • 47 views

FOX Sports analysts Daniel Cormier and Kenny Florian break down the upcoming fight UFC Fight Night 88 main event between Cody Garbrandt and Thomas Almeida. read news >>

Cain Velasquez: I’m the Best in the Division; I Just Need to Stay Healthy (Video)

  • 9 days ago
  • 80 views

Cain Velasquez addressed injuries and staying healthy, maintaining that, when he is healthy, he is the best fighter the UFC heavyweight division has to offer. read news >>

Cormier named honorary chairman of Wrestling World Cup

  • 6 days ago
  • 0 views

Daniel Cormier, a two-time Olympian in men’s freestyle wrestling and current UFC light heavyweight champion, will serve as the Honorary Chairman of the 2016 World Cup of Freestyle Wrestling, set for read news >>

UFC Champ Daniel Cormier Named Honorary Chairman of Wrestling World Cup

  • 5 days ago
  • 9 views

UFC champion Daniel Cormier, a two-time Olympian in men’s freestyle wrestling, will serve as the Honorary Chairman of the 2016 World Cup of Freestyle Wrestling. read news >>

Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier Firing Up the Hype Machine Well Ahead of UFC 200

  • 6 hours ago
  • 8 views

As the months dwindle down to weeks, UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier and interim beltholder Jon Jones have begun to ramp up their trash talk. read news >>

Daniel Cormier Reveals UFC 200 Game Plan for Jon Jones Rematch

  • 28 days ago
  • 87 views

Light heavyweight champ Daniel Cormier and former titleholder Jon Jones will rematch at UFC 200. Cormier says he’s not changing his game plan from their first fight. read news >>

Daniel Cormier Sympathizes with Conor McGregor, ‘But It’s Part of the Job’

  • 27 days ago
  • 35 views

Daniel Cormier weighs in on media obligations and Conor McGregor being removed fro the UFC 200 fight card. "It's part of the job." read news >>

How Daniel Cormier Can Beat Jon Jones at UFC 200

  • 27 days ago
  • 88 views

Daniel Cormier, be careful what you wish for. Sometimes dreams come true. For Cormier, that day comes at UFC 200. He'll get one more chance to prove that he can beat Jon Jones, widely considered the read news >>

UFC 200 Free Fight: Jon Jones Dominates, Defends Belt Against Daniel Cormier

  • 27 days ago
  • 19 views

Relive the first match-up between Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier at UFC 182 before their heated rivalry hits the Octagon again at UFC 200. read news >>