BUFFALO: Daniel Cormier beat Anthony Johnson for the second time, using a submission victory to retain the light heavyweight championship in the main event of UFC 210 on Saturday night.
With tears in his eyes, Johnson announced his retirement inside the octagon, saying “it’s time for me to do something else.”
Cormier edged Johnson at UFC 187 in 2015 by submission, and he won with a rear naked choke at the KeyBank Center.
Jon Jones, considered perhaps the true light heavyweight champ, looked on from cageside and stretched his arms in approval as the crowd went wild for the former champ. Three months from completing a yearlong doping ban, Jones said he was focused on reclaiming the light heavyweight title he’s lost twice due to suspensions.
Cormier wanted nothing to do with Jones’ posturing, saying, “don’t talk to me about a guy who’s ineligible. When you get your (act) together, I’ll be here waiting to fight.”
Cormier was awarded the light heavyweight belt only after Jones was stripped of it in early 2015, when he was suspended by the UFC following his involvement in a hit-and-run accident in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Jones had successfully defended his title eight times through 2013. But he’s fought just three times over the past four years.
He had joked that he would confront Cormier in the cage but stayed in his seat and hung out with several members of the Buffalo Bills
“I’m not going in that cage. I’ll leave that man alone. Let him enjoy his night,” Jones said. “I want to talk to my business partners, talk to the UFC and see what they want to do.”
Cormier’s lone loss in a 19-fight MMA career came against Jones in 2015.--AP