UFC 252: Miocic vs. Cormier preview
Daniel Cormier and Stipe Miocic will face off for the third time Saturday, Aug. 15 at UFC 252, and it’s not just the heavyweight title that is on the line. Cormier announced his retirement, win or lose, so this anticipated fight looks like the most impactful fight of the year.
Will Cormier regain the title and retire on top? Or will Miocic stand tall to keep his title and win the trilogy?
Sun, August 16 2020, 4:00 AM
Miocic vs. Cormier III is a toss-up
Both Miocic and Cormier enter knowing they are in a kill-or-be-killed type of fight. Cormier stopped Miocic in their first bout, then Miocic returned the favor in the rematch. Because both fighters are tremendously skilled and evenly matched, it’s no surprise the odds are so tight.
Though Cormier got an assist from unintentional eye pokes in the first fight, Miocic made his adjustments and wore Cormier down in the rematch. That may not have been the case if Cormier willingly engaged the bigger man, but it was Miocic’s outside striking that wore Cormier down.
Miocic's varied attack will keep Cormier on his toes
To regain the title and retire with the elusive happy ending, Cormier has to avoid trading with Miocic on the outside and save his best shots in the clinch. Miocic’s varied attack overwhelmed Cormier, and there’s no reason for him to change his game plan. If Cormier can’t bop him early or score a takedown, Miocic will grind him down and score another stoppage late in the fight.
Fans should be in for a treat, as a barbaric clash is almost guaranteed. Miocic and Cormier do not like each other and their styles complement each other perfectly. If Cormier cannot score something big early, he is going to have a long night slugging it out with Miocic again.
Don't expect a fairy-tale ending for Cormier
Expect Miocic to endure some punishment early on, but Cormier’s inability to get on the inside will have him fight Miocic’s fight for the duration. This will be Cormier's undoing, because Miocic hits harder and will mix up his attack.
After the two exchange a series of shuddering blows, Miocic will connect with a big punch that will stop Cormier cold in the third.