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Daniel Cormier offers up assessment on possible opponents for final Strikeforce fight

Now that Daniel Cormier has emerged as the Strikeforce World Grand Prix champion he’ll look towards one final fight under the promotion’s banner before likely heading off to test his skills inside the Octagon. However, what’s unknown is exactly who Cormier will face considering the only other heavyweight still under contract to Strikeforce is the very man he beat a little over a week ago – Josh Barnett.

Cormier was recently asked by MMAJunkie to give his thoughts on potential opponents including Fedor Emelianenko, Sergei Kharitonov, and Tim Sylvia. Here are his responses:

Emelianenko – “That would be awesome. Won’t happen, though.”

Kharitonov – “I saw him walk down (Alistair) Overeem and slump him over the ring ropes. That would be a great fight. I would fight Kharitonov.”

Sylvia – “No problem at all fighting him. Any time you can get a win over a guy that held that belt, it’s so prestigious.”

In past conversations the unbeaten former Olympian has also brought up the idea of Zuffa bringing over a competitor who currently calls the UFC home such as Shane Carwin. It’s also possible a new name could emerge in the next six months while Cormier heals from a broken hand he suffered in the bout against Barnett. However, one man he said he won’t fight is AKA teammate Todd Duffee (with the same of course being true in relation to Cain Velasquez as well).


  • Lord Faust says:

    I have no idea who to throw at DC, to keep him in the front of the pack.

    For Barnett, I think a fight with Mir would be great especially since the former’s title hopes are basically gone at this point. I doubt UFC will send Mir down to what is perceived as the ‘farm team’, though.

  • MCM says:

    I’d like to see the Kharitonov fight. I think it’d be an awesome striking exchange until Cormier decides he wants to take it to the ground, and it’s a fight that SF can put together without causing any upheaval in the UFC. It’s also winable fight for DC meaning he can come to the UFC with an unblemished record without being fed a can. (like Timmmay)

    Speaking of the UFC, I agree they should move Mir over for a one off against Barnett. It’s a fight alot of fans have been drooling over for years. It doesn’t affect the title picture in the UFC. And it’s not a step down in competition OR payday for Mir considering he only received $200k for his title bout against JDS with no win bonus available. Being that it would only be a one off in SF before they’re both brought back to the UFC, I think it’s a good move.

  • Lord Faust says:

    The Kharitonov fight would be a blast, but I think Sergei is injured — not that it’s a big deal, since DC’s and is broken — and currently fighting for K-1 I think.

  • Brendhan Conlan says:

    What about someone like Stefan Struve? Coming off some nice wins, isn’t really in the title-hunt in the UFC, and the size difference would make for a cool visual. Roy Nelson could be fun too.

  • MCM says:

    For DC or Barnett?

    I think Struve is only a fight or two from getting a title shot himself, so I wouldn’t move him away from the promotion just yet. He can still face either fighter when they get to the UFC.

    After hearing the crowd the other night, I think wasting someone with Nelson’s drawing ability on an un-promoted, empty SF card is a sin. I also feel that rankings wise, Nelson is a step down for either guy.

  • Lord Faust says:

    I There are a few guys on the UFC roster I could see doing a one-off in SF. The problem is, SF as a brand is a pox; a plague of obscurity. They pull good ratings on Showtime, but I am sure those are adjusted to account for the fact Showtime is a “premium” *cough* network, that is above-and-beyond regular cable access.

    I think the biggest problem, aside from getting UFC and SF to work together, is that I bet most UFC guys would lose money from sponsors going from the big show to the “farm team”. Even if they kept their UFC base pay, I bet anyone moving over to SF would notice a different in their pocket book.

    That’s all speculation, but I’m sure things like that factor into those decisions.

  • Screenplaya says:

    I wonder if maybe the Carwin fight (with Cormier) might be feasible. Carwin has been laid up a while, and has lacked success of late, so maybe he could take on Cormier in his final SF bout. I wonder if you might be able to sell that fight as a title qualifier, guaranteeing the victor the next-next shot at the belt?

  • Xspur says:

    Carwin has posted personally on the UG that he would not take what he precieves as a step down to fight Cormier in SF.


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