UFC 226: Miocic vs. Cormier Official Poster Released

Check out the all-new UFC 226 poster right here:

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The UFC will kick off a packed run of events in Chile tonight, but it’s safe to say the pinnacle of the promotion’s summer schedule is focused on July 7’s UFC 226 from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

There, dominant heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic will meet light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier in a high-stakes super fight for the 265-pound gold, while featherweight champ Max Holloway meets surging challenger Brian Ortega in a similarly anticipated co-main event.

The card will be the culmination of the traditional International Fight Week after Miocic and Cormier finish their tenure as opposing coaches on the latest season of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF).

The UFC recently released the official poster for the event, so check it out here:

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Francis Ngannou’s Coach Responds To Recent Death Threats

Francis Ngannou’s coach issued a brutal warning to those who issued him death threats online:

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Top-ranked UFC heavyweight Francis Ngannou saw his hype train come crashing down when he lost a one-sided unanimous decision to champion Stipe Miocic at January’s UFC 220.

The loss prompted the expected social media backlash from the Internet warriors wanting to poke fun at how the UFC’s next big thing lost in such dominant fashion, but some overzealous ‘fans’ reportedly took things too far in messages to ‘The Predator’s’ striking coach Dewy Cooper.

Aside from the normal trolling that accompanies such a loss in a huge title bout, Cooper recently revealed to MMAjunkie that he also received death threats because of the fight. A longtime kickboxer, Cooper was surprised so-called fans of MMA would take their responses to such a level, especially against a highly-trained master of martial arts.

But if these so-called fans are going to make threats, Cooper said he told them where and when they can find him to carry them out:

“I responded to every single one of them – ‘(Expletive) you, I’m at One Kick’s Gym on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays,’” Cooper told MMAjunkie Radio. “‘I’m at Mayweather’s gym on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays. I’m at the UFC gym at 2 o’clock on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Come kill me, mother(expletive).”

Even though Cooper has experienced the ups and downs of the fight game throughout his 30-year career in combat sports, he’s still baffled by the social media-focused world of MMA in that regard. With the threats coming both baseless online and inching towards true physical violence, Cooper issued a final warning to his detractors willing to threaten him – online or in person:

“We’re not being bullied physically or on social media,” Cooper said. “You talk (expletive) about me, I’m talking (expletive) about you. Period. I don’t give a (expletive) if I’m at the White House with the president. I don’t care if I’m at the hospital with my girl having my child. You disrespect me, I’m disrespecting you.

“I’m a Malcolm X follower. I believe eye for an eye, cheek for a cheek, and that’s what it’s going to be until the day I die. But I’m the nicest, coolest guy in the world. But I’m no punk (expletive). I’m not going to be disrespected and my life challenged and not have some serious recourse about it.”

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Daniel Cormier Says Him vs. Stipe Miocic ‘Is As Good As It Gets’

Daniel Cormier is well aware that his legacy could be set in stone following UFC 226…

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On July 7, a bonafide super fight will headline UFC 226 during International Fight Week at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, as heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic will put his title on the line against 205-pound titleholder Daniel Cormier.

And while the stakes are obviously high in terms of titles, Cormier feels as if this bout, which he described as ‘unbelievable’, could hold major implications in terms of pound-for-pound status as well:

“That’s what it should be. Stipe and I are ranked like No. 3 and 4 or No. 4 and 5 in the pound-for-pound rankings right now. How much better does it get than that?” Cormier told FloCombat. “This is as good as it gets in terms of sport, in terms of athletic competition, in terms of importance of the sport tied to one fight.

“It’s unbelievable. I’m so lucky to be a part of this.”

Cormier is also looking at the bout as one that could further cement his legacy in the sport. The former Olympian has established himself as one of the greatest light heavyweights of all-time, holding a 20-1-1 professional record, with his only loss coming against Jon Jones.

In addition to beating another champion and another fighter considered to be one of the best in the world, a win at UFC 226 will also make Cormier only the second fighter in UFC history to simultaneously hold two titles in two different weight classes.

And if he comes out on top in July, Cormier says that his accomplishments won’t be able to be denied:

“This gives me exactly what I’ve been pining for,” Cormier said. “I get this done, everything I’ve always wanted, wished for and hoped for is not only a reality but it’s my truth now. I can honestly say I am one of the greatest mixed martial artists of all time and have no reservations about it and no one can question it.

“They can only say you know what he’s accomplished, he has that right, and he’s earned it.”

How do you see UFC 226’s main event playing out?

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Cormier Says Miocic Bout Should Determine Pound-For-Pound Best Fighter

Daniel Cormier is grateful for the position he’s currently in and feels he’s going into a bout that should determine who the pound-for-pound best fighter is. Cormier is the reigning Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight tit…

Daniel Cormier is grateful for the position he’s currently in and feels he’s going into a bout that should determine who the pound-for-pound best fighter is. Cormier is the reigning Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight title holder. His next bout, however, won’t be a title defense. Instead, Cormier has his sights set on Stipe […]

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Junior Dos Santos Claims USADA Made His Last Year ‘A Nightmare’

Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos will finally return to the octagon when he meets Blagoy Ivanov in the main event of July 14’s UFC Fight Night 133 from Boise, but it’s been a long road to get there for him. Dos Santos was provisionally suspended for testing positive for banned diuretic hydrochlorothiazide in a […]

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Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos will finally return to the octagon when he meets Blagoy Ivanov in the main event of July 14’s UFC Fight Night 133 from Boise, but it’s been a long road to get there for him.

Dos Santos was provisionally suspended for testing positive for banned diuretic hydrochlorothiazide in a normal USADA sample collection last August. He was then pulled from his UFC 215 bout against Francis Ngannou last September. After a lengthy adjudication process, however, “Cigano” and his Brazilian countrymen Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Marcos Rogerio de Lima were found to have been flagged due to tainted supplements produced by a pharmacy.

He’ll now return when he was given a six-month suspension that has now expired, but the time – and the big fight with Ngannou – is gone for now. Dos Santos recently opened up about the frustrating times he experienced trying to clear his name to MMA Fighting, noting that he felt he was guilty until proven innocent. Ultimately, he feels his name is cleared, which was of the utmost importance to the knockout slugger:

“They stopped my whole career to investigate the thing,” dos Santos said. “I think that goes in the completely opposite direction of the law. I’m innocent until proven guilty. In this case, it’s different — you’re guilty until you’re proven innocent. So, yeah. This is not good, man. Especially in my case, that I knew I didn’t do anything wrong and I was going all through this situation. It was a very bad feeling.

“I feel the truth was found and everybody knows that was a tainted supplement,” dos Santos said. “It wasn’t my fault, it wasn’t my intention. There’s always negative people, that they keep saying bad things about you. They hold on the negative things. But I feel like I got my reputation back. It’s very, very important to me.”

“Cigano” went into further detail about why his process was so frustrating, focusing on the fact that he had tested positive for extremely low levels of the banned substance, something that should have tipped USADA off to the questionable nature of his failure. Such a trivial amount, he suggested, is too much to hold up a hard-working athlete’s career:

“Based on those numbers, on those things, in my mind USADA would be the organization that know that I’m not a cheater,” dos Santos said. “But it wasn’t like that. I still went through this whole investigation, this whole scenario and they were putting me as a cheater. It was very bad, man. Now, I hope they can keep a clean sport however they can do that. But they have better rules, better ways to treat the athletes. Because it’s our lives. I hope the system gets better.”

Overall, though, dos Santos still supports USADA because he wants the UFC to feature clean champs:

“I know this sport, these drugs, these performance-enhancing drugs are a big problem for all the athletes. Because everybody knows most of the athletes, in general, in other sports, too, sometimes they take PEDs. I want to see a clean sport, because we want to know who is the real champion. We don’t want to see a fake champion over there.”

While he may be in favor of a clean sport, he reiterated that proving his innocence made his life a nightmare for the last year, and the ordeal saddened him. “Cigano” chose to affirm that he became champion the right way, and wants to yet again:

“This last year was a nightmare for me, because man, I never imagine I could go through something like that in my career,” dos Santos said. “I’ve been playing the fair game my entire career. I became the champion of the world like that and my goal is to become champion of the world again this way. This thing that happened with me and USADA, that was very sad for me.”

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Daniel Cormier Reacts To His Ever-Changing Fan Perception

Daniel Cormier has been on both sides of the fence. H’s been the good guy and the bad guy. The babyface and the heel. When fight fans had their first introduction to the light heavyweight champion, he was the plucky, undersized alternate who won the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix. Fans loved him for his thrilling […]

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Daniel Cormier has been on both sides of the fence.

H’s been the good guy and the bad guy. The babyface and the heel.

When fight fans had their first introduction to the light heavyweight champion, he was the plucky, undersized alternate who won the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix.

Fans loved him for his thrilling first-round knockout of Antônio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva. Then something changed around the time of the first Jon Jones fight, where fight fans decidedly wanted ‘Bones’ to win. That continued on into his long rivalry with Jones that was extended by Jones’ many outside-the-cage issues and suspensions for performance-enhancing drugs.

Cormier recently spoke on the rollercoaster he’s been on with MMA fans throughout the years (MMA Fighting):

“When I went out there that first time and they booed me with Jon [Jones], I just played the bad guy. I will say all the stuff you hate me saying. You hate that I make fun of [Jon Jones] for his addictions? I will say every one of those addictions and I’ll list them all out. Before it was like, I don’t think they’ll boo me for it. Okay, you’ll boo me for it? You don’t like that? I’d kind of feel out what people liked and didn’t like. And the things I got the most hate, on Twitter, I would start to say it in public. If you want me to be your bad guy, I’ll be your bad guy. I just kind of gauge it.”

But although he was the ‘bad guy’ prior to his UFC 214 knockout defeat at the hands of “Bones,” Cormier shomehow found himself in the fans good graces once again at January’s UFC 220, when they cheered his name as he finished surging competitor Volkan Oezdemir.

“People just decide what they want to do. Going into the Jones fight, it was all boos. And then going into Boston, it was all cheers. Then when I went to that press conference in Brooklyn, cheers. They put me on the camera and for the first time, people yelled positive stuff. Usually they just boo me. I didn’t care. I just get used to it.”

Cormier recently finished filming his season of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) against fellow UFC champion Stipe Miocic, and the two will face off in a champion vs. champion superfight in the main event of UFC 226 on July 7.

Will fans be rooting for him there?

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