“It’s hard for me to say I’m his equal right now because he won the first one. A real rivalry starts when you are going back and forth and you both hold victories over one another. I have to win this one for it to become Ali vs. Frazier or Lakers vs. Celtics, for it to become the big rivalry everyone already believes it to be. I have to win this fight because if I don’t then it just becomes Tyson vs. Holyfield where people thought it was going to be a rivalry, but Mike Tyson didn’t get his job done. It’s a rivalry in most terms, but the most important term for me personally is the competitive side. If I can’t win then it doesn’t matter. I can win all the arguing and bickering, but if I can’t win inside that cage then there isn’t even an argument. I want to win this fight then fans are going to see a true rivalry begin.”
-Daniel Cormier talks to Duane Finley at FloCombat.com to explain why his rivalry with Jon Jones isn’t yet a true rivalry.
Penick’s Analysis: The first fight with Jon Jones was the most important fight of Cormier’s career to date. This rematch is even bigger on that scale. He gets that, and he knows a second loss to Jones makes him just another name on the long list of fighters who have fallen to the best fighter in the world. A win at UFC 200 puts him on equal footing with Jones for the first time, and makes a third fight even bigger down the line. If he fails to secure that victory, then he just remains the second best.
[Photo (c) Jayne Kamin-Oncea via USA Today Sports]
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