Daniel Cormier was a broken man after his second defeat to his rival Jon Jones.
However, Jones cheated and tested positive for steroids in their last fight, and Cormier was given back his light heavyweight championship. Still, he didn’t feel like a champion.
He had something to prove… and his fight with Volkan Oezdemir was the perfect opportunity.
With a Boston crowd roaring and chanting his initials, Cormier showed why he’s the best active light heavyweight fighter in UFC. He dominated Oezdemir via TKO to retain the 205-pound belt.
Cormier raised his hands in triumph as UFC President Dana White wrapped the title belt around his waist. Cormier dropped to his knees on the canvas and said this fight was the validation he needed to prove he was worthy of being called champion.
— UFC (@ufc) January 21, 2018
“I’ve lost twice to Jon Jones,” Cormier said. “I said coming in here that I felt like I was fighting for a vacant title again. I got the job done, so I’m the UFC champion again. I can’t ignore what happened in July. I’m a competitor. Even though I came in here as a champ, I needed a win to feel like one.”
The end of the fight came at the 2:00 mark of the second round, after Cormier took Oezdemir down and moved into a crucifix. He trapped both of the Swiss fighter’s arms under his body and landed free shots with the left hand until the bout was stopped.
With the win, Cormier (20-1-1) secured his fourth defense of the UFC light heavyweight title, while Oezdemir (15-2-0) saw his five-fight winning streak snapped. The champ also took home performance of the night honors, good enough for an extra $50,000.