The UFC announced a list this week of STRIKEFORCE fighters that had signed contracts with the UFC. The premier name on the list may be Heavyweight Daniel Cormier, whose undefeated record and Olympic wrestling pedigree make him a top fighter in the division already. Cormier has talked a great deal about dropping down to 205 lbs to meet Jon Jones for the Lightheavyweight title, and recently Jones answered with just the right touch of disdain. This will be a great fight for the summer!
Of course, both men are scheduled to fight other opponents in the April time frame, which is why the match makes sense for August or September. If both men come through their April bouts unscathed, it could be rushed for the UFC’s July 4th weekend card which this match could main event.
Cormier has an April date with Frank Mir as a heavyweight. Cormier is going to be favored in that match, and he should come out on top over a fading former Champion. What will be interesting to see is what he weighs, and if he has started the migration to 205 lbs. Cormier has been in the high 230′s for most of his fights, and despite a wrestling background, he is 33 years old and weight cuts take their toll on an athlete. Doing it gradually by adjusting diet and making a few other changes is likely the best way to go for Cormier, so if he comes in at between 225 and 230 for the Mir fight, it is a sign he is heading south.
To his credit, Cormier wants the fight and has been lobbying for it. A lot of people have turned fights with Jones down, and fighters like Forrest Griffin are on record stating they want no part of the champ.
Jones for his part seemed to accept the challenge this week in the press, stating he wished Cormier would just drop the weight and the fight would get done.
Jones also has a date after the 17th season of the ‘TUF’ reality series, he will face opposing coach Chael Sonnen in April as well. Jones is already considered an overwhelming favorite in the fight with Sonnen, and his name has come up to face the winner of the Dan Henderson-Lyoto Machida bout, or possibly in a superfight with Anderson Silva.
He has already trounced Machida once, Henderson was also a more than 10 to 1 underdog the first time that match was scheduled, and Anderson Silva may or may not be ready for Jones this summer. Having Cormier waiting in the wings is a good way to keep Jones active, and it will be a stiff challenge.
Assuming both men win their April engagements, the books will likely have Jones coming in as a favorite, perhaps as high as 2 to 1, when the lines are issued.
Fight fans haven’t really seen either men tested, so this is a difficult pick. Really comes down to body types, with Cormier’s stocky explosiveness against Jones length and strength.