Daniel Cormier: UFC could make Tom Aspinall champ, strip Jon Jones without backlash

Daniel Cormier has expressed his belief that Tom Aspinall, who recently claimed the interim heavyweight title, should be declared the undisputed UFC heavyweight champion due to Jon Jones‘ injury and uncertain recovery timeline.

Daniel Cormier has some strong opinions. He’s convinced that Tom Aspinall should be the undisputed UFC heavyweight champion.

Aspinall recently defeated Sergei Pavlovich, snagging the interim heavyweight title at UFC 295. The original plan was for Jon Jones and Stipe Miocic to headline, but an injury sidelined Jones. With Jones out for recovery, the UFC postponed that bout until next year and created the interim title.

Cormier thinks the UFC should have Jones vacate the title. His reasoning? “I believe that this fight — before Sergei lost — was for the undisputed title, because Jones and Stipe are only going to fight each other,” Cormier said recently on The MMA Hour. “You cannot have Tom Aspinall defend the interim championship.”

He believes that Jones and Stipe don’t need the title to fight. They could just fight and call it for the Greatest of All Time. He suggests creating a new belt.

Cormier is confident that Aspinall will lead the heavyweight division for years to come. He thinks Aspinall should be the undisputed champ. “Jones is the undisputed champion. He earned that in the octagon by beating Ciryl Gane. But if he’s only going to fight Stipe, and that’s not for another, what, eight months, seven months? I think you put Tom Aspinall as the champ and I don’t think anyone would bat an eyelid.”

Jones is widely considered to be one of the greatest fighters of all-time. He claimed the vacant heavyweight title by beating Ciryl Gane in March, after previous heavyweight Francis Ngannou left the UFC. But Jones has only fought once at heavyweight, leading some to question his claim as heavyweight champion. Cormier, however, doesn’t agree.

Cormier would have loved to see Jones and Francis fight. “Francis was the undisputed heavyweight champion, but then Francis left. You can only fight the people in front of you. Because if I say that Jones isn’t undisputed because he didn’t beat Francis, how in the world could I ever call myself the champion of the world when I never beat Jones?”

Aspinall agrees with Cormier. He thinks Jones should be stripped of the title due to his injury and that he would happily fight Miocic while Jones recovers. The UFC, however, doesn’t seem inclined to pursue this route.

Cormier has some concerns about the potential match-up between Jones and Miocic. “That’s one of my worries with Miocic in the Jones fight: He’s already 41,” Cormier said.

Cormier also reflects on how age affects training. “It’s a whole other eight months, and you feel it when you start to get into your 40s in terms of training. Things start to slip. You’re not as good as you were. You can’t go to that next level.” He speaks from experience, noting that as he got older, he felt himself unable to push to that next level. His body wouldn’t allow it, even though his mind wanted to.


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