Cormier understands this as well as anyone, and as Lewis has continued to talk himself down and brush off his chances at victory, Cormier has spoken up. Lewis won by knockout in the third round.
"My balls was hot", uttered Lewis when asked by UFC commentator Joe Rogan why he had stripped down to his boxer shorts after the fight. A shirtless Cormier had starred in a parody video of "All About That Bass", and danced with drumsticks out of a Popeye's box. The 39-year-old had been expected to meet Brock Lesnar at the beginning of 2019, but the UFC was in a bind and Cormier took the opportunity.
"It's just one that I can't pass up, because I know there's a lot of guys in this division that probably deserve a shot more than I'm getting", Lewis said.
Cormier (21-1, 1 no-contest) fights for now as both the UFC heavyweight and light heavyweight champ, though his days as a dual champion are numbered no matter the outcome against Lewis.
Lewis fights weeks after he took 129 significant strikes (78 to the head) in his win against Alexander Volkov.
Cormier is nearly guaranteed the biggest paycheck of his career to face Lesnar, who has always been one of the most profitable fighters when it comes to pay-per-views.
"Derrick Lewis didn't. Derrick Lewis became a millionaire".
Sure, the heavyweight championship is on the line at UFC 230. "But Ali (Abdelaziz) is a good manager, he put me in touch with Dana and I let him know exactly how I feel". Vince McMahon or anybody else would've build a guy to the point that you like him. But pay very close attention to who he really is. In three of those bouts, he was knocked out.
Cormier swears that's not going to happen, though. The key for him will be to keep Cormier at a distance and to be able to stuff his takedown attempts. Well, he looks smaller on WWE right now?
Cormier, though, has been in with huge punchers before and has only once been wobbled, in the first of his two wins with Anthony "Rumble" Johnson.