After nearly a year of speculation, the much anticipated heavyweight clash between Daniel Cormier and Brock Lesnar appears to be dead. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported Tuesday night that Lesnar informed UFC president Dana White that he will not be returning to fight.
“He told me he’s done. He’s retired,” White said.
Lesnar was brought to UFC 226 last July and confronted Cormier in the cage after his win over Stipe Miocic. The fight seemed all but a done deal and Lesnar had even re-inserted himself into the USADA testing pool to finish out his suspension from UFC 200 and to ensure his eligibility to compete this year. When Lesnar lost his WWE Universal Championship match to Seth Rollins at Wrestlemania last month, a UFC return seemed imminent, but now that appears to not be the case.
With Lesnar out of the way, UFC looks to be moving ahead with a Cormier-Miocic rematch. That fight is currently slated for the Aug. 17 pay-per-view from Anaheim but has not been confirmed by UFC. Whenever the fight happens Miocic will be prepared to get his title back.
“I’m ready,” Miocic told ESPN. “I’ve been ready. And I’m going to take back what’s mine.”
While losing Lesnar will hurt at the box office, at least UFC’s heavyweight division can move forward without the cloud of a potential Lesnar fight disrupting things.
UFC 1 doc in the works
Sports Illustrated Films is said to be working on a documentary on the first UFC event. “UFC 1: Origin of the Octagon” is being produced by SI Films and should be released later this year.
The documentary will be available on the SI.tv streaming service. The service already includes a feature on Ronda Rousey. John Mason Gordon will be directing the film.
“We are thrilled to work with Sports Illustrated in telling the largely unknown stories of the creators, fighters, and executives who put everything on the line with success so unlikely. That it’s the origin of the UFC, a brand almost everyone knows, makes it an incredibly exciting documentary opportunity,” Gordon said.
-The Association of Boxing Commissions is looking to have a unified definition of a grounded fighter according to ESPN’s Marc Raimondi. Committee chair Sean Wheelock said they are hoping to have the new rule ready for July.
-Andrea Lee vs. Montana De La Rosa, Bryan Barberena vs. Randy Brown, Kevin Holland vs. Alessio Di Chirico, Markus Perez vs. Deron Winn, Allen Crowder vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik, Ashley Yoder vs. Syuri Kondo, Ariane Lipski vs. Molly McCann, and Andre Ewell vs. Anderson dos Santos have all been added to UFC Greenville on June 22.
-Maurice Greene vs. Junior Albini, Justin Ledet vs. Dalcha Lungiambula have been added to UFC Minneapolis on June 29.
-Claudia Gadelha vs. Randa Markos is in the works for UFC 239 on July 6 from Las Vegas.
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