This could turn out to be an epic contest, as Stipe Miocic bids to reclaim the heavyweight title he lost to Daniel Cormier 13 months ago at UFC 226.
Daniel Cormier shocked the world in Las Vegas last summer, as he ended Stipe Miocic’s six-fight winning streak, which included five heavyweight title fights. DC became a two-weight champion before vacating his light heavyweight crown, and is looking to create a dynasty as the baddest man on the planet. At the age of 40 though, he can’t afford any mistakes this weekend.
Daniel Cormier to win by decision or technical decision
Cormier upset the odds with his first-round knockout of Miocic last time, although there was a degree of controversy after it came just moments after DC caught the champ in the eye with a stray finger. There was no doubt about the KO though, or Cormier’s tactics. The fight lasted little more than four minutes, but the challenger clearly wanted to utilise his grappling skills in the clinch and create openings on the way back out. The plan worked to perfection as DC caught Miocic with a devastating right hand to end the fight.
Stipe Miocic to win by decision or technical decision
Miocic hasn’t stepped into the Octagon since that night. He had a legitimate claim for an instant rematch, but Derrick Lewis was given a title shot instead, with DC submitting the Black Beast at UFC 230 last November. A man who was credited with lifting the heavyweight division to new heights, Miocic is now looking to exact his revenge, and has promised Cormier a very different fight this time round. With a knockout percentage of 72%, the American is a lethal and heavy striker, although DC seemed to cope well with his power last time.
Daniel Cormier to win in round
We can expect Miocic to make some adjustments, one of which has to be to use his reach advantage to keep Cormier out of the pocket and away from the clinch. The champion is very good at closing the distance though, and isn’t scared about getting clipped on the way in. Miocic has to be more aggressive than in the first fight, and if he is, his status as the odds-against underdog with all of the best betting sites looks very attractive. Whether DC can utilise his wresting skills or Miocic can outbox his opponent – neither of which things we didn’t see much of last year – this fight’s unlikely to go the distance.
The fight to finish inside the distance
Daniel Cormier to win the fight
Miocic was devastated to lose his title last year, and his frustration only grew when he wasn’t granted an immediate rematch. The former champ will be desperate to win his belt back, and has been planning for this fight for the past 13 months. Cormier is a difficult, slippery customer, and always seems to come up with an answer. He’s put any questions over his legitimacy as a true heavyweight well and truly to bed, and ought to be in better shape than Miocic, who may have spent too long out of the Octagon. Miocic has been knocked out twice now, so there are bigger question marks over his chin compared to Cormier, who never really looked troubled by his opponent’s power last July. This could be a quick and brutal affair once again.
John Abrams is a passionate sports fanatic who follows NBA, NFL, NHL, NCAAF, NCAAB and Formula 1. A former sports trader, John has an unquestioned thirst for sports knowledge and often fills his time playing fantasy or placing wagers online.
All Predictions by John Abrams