It turns out, when Daniel Cormier took to the Octagon at UFC 230 to face Derrick Lewis, he may have had other title fight options. Former champion Stipe Miocic, who Cormier defeated back in July at UFC 226 claims that he offered himself up as an opponent for DC in the headlining spot of the Madison Square Garden PPV, only to be told that the champion “wasn’t available.”
A week later and the Lewis fight was booked.
In a recent interview with ESPN, Miocic made it clear that the whole experience left a bit of a bad taste in his mouth. Especially when it came to actually watching the November 3rd main event (transcript via MMA Mania).
“Yeah I saw the fight. I saw ‘DC’ beat a guy with a bunch of Instagram followers, with one hand,” Miocic said, when asked if he’d watched the fight between Cormier and Lewis.
“I offered myself to fight ‘DC’ on that card and he said no. They told me that he wasn’t available and literally a week later, he is fighting Lewis. It was annoying (watching the fight), it should be me,” he added. “There’s a ton of guys who never defend the belt and they get title shot rematches. I defended it three times, did it as favor for a super fight and I don’t get a rematch?”
With Brock Lesnar likely next on the docket for Cormier, and retirement a strong possibility after that, it sounds like Miocic may just plan on waiting out the title picture for his chance to step in. “I’ll just keep talking, man. I deserve the shot. I broke the record, I worked my butt off, defended it multiple times – more than anyone in the UFC,” the Strong Style MMA fighter explained.
Unfortunately for fans, that may mean that one of the best heavyweights in the world won’t be back in the Octagon until well into 2019. Unless the Lesnar/Cormier fight breaks down, or the UFC can convince him to take another bout.