When UFC heavyweight and light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier defeated Derrick Lewis by submission in the second round of the main event at UFC 230 Saturday night, he made history by becoming the first two-division champion in UFC history to successfully defend both titles. But it was what happened next that really makes Cormier a champion.
After his historic victory at the World’s Most Famous Arena, Cormier had his two children, 7-year-old Daniel Jr and 6-year-old Keke, come to the Octagon, handed them each a championship belt and took photos with them. From the looks on their faces, it was a moment they will never forget.
I had a chance to speak to Cormier exclusively after the match and asked him what that moment meant to him.
“My kids are everything,” Cormier exclaimed. “The fact that they get to share in all this with me is truly amazing. I’m glad that my career is going on where they understand what’s happening,” the double champ said, before barking out instructions to his children, who I suspect were up well past their bedtime regardless of time zone. But it was for a special occasion.
Cormier says that he will retire before his 40th birthday, which is on March 20, 2019, so UFC 235 on Saturday, March 2, 2019, should be his swan song, against Brock Lesnar. Cormier called the WWE wrestler out by name after his win. “Brock Lesnar, bring that WWE belt over here when you come; I feel like taking that one too,” Cormier boasted.
Cormier expressed that if Lesnar was unavailable for UFC 235, he would entertain a third battle with nemesis Jon Jones (who faces Alexander Gustafsson next month at UFC 232) or former heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic, in that order. Either way, it seems like Cormier has one last moment to share with Daniel Jr and Keke in the Octagon, once again putting his family first.
In the co-main event, Jacaré knocked out fan-favorite and New Yorker Chris Wiedman in a back-and-forth classic that earned fight of the night.
A star may have been born Saturday night when Israel Adesanya, who is now 15-0, knocked out Derek Brunson in the first round. Adesanya has a lot of confidence but has the skill to back it up.