Former UFC light heavyweight and heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier believes he should have retired after he beat Derrick Lewis two years ago.
Cormier defended his heavyweight title against Lewis at UFC 230, via second round rear naked choke. That, ‘DC’ regrets, should have been the final fight of his career, as he was forced to have a back surgery afterwards.
“I Wasn’t The Same Guy”
“When I had that back surgery in 2018 after Derrick Lewis it was over. It was over. Like I mean, it was absolutely, it was over. I fought twice since and I possibly should not have. You can find those things in hindsight,” Cormier said. “But, when I had that back surgery it so severely limited what I could do that it was pretty much over. I wasn’t the same guy. I trained hard last fight and Stipe beat me. But, I just wasn’t the same guy no more after the back surgery. I should’ve probably stopped, I should’ve probably stopped. I wasn’t the same guy, I couldn’t train as I trained before and that is about as honest as I could be with everyone.”
Cormier ended 2018 as the pound-for-pound number one fighter in the UFC, but has since lost twice to Miocic. The former two division champion now believes that he should have said goodbye to the sport when he was at the very top.
“I think you can’t live with regret. Living with regret is tough. It sucks because at the end of 2018 I was atop the world,” Cormier said. “I was the number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world, I beat Stipe, I had won back the light heavyweight championship, I defeated Derrick Lewis. Anytime you are the first at anything in the UFC, it is massive. At the end of 2018, I was riding that wave but then my back was just so bad.
“It was bad for a long time, right, there were a lot of times in the middle of training camp I would have to take days off because my back was so beat up. Legimtately, break everything down to the core, all the wear and tear in order to get back to my feet. I remember times in the middle of my championship run or before when I was crawling up the stairs at my house because my back was so jacked up. I was always able to manage it but once I had that surgery it was done.”
Did Daniel Cormier harm his legacy by continuing to fight on after he beat Derrick Lewis at UFC 230?