Former two-division UFC champion Cormier had a historic run in combat sports before he decided to hang up the gloves and transition into a media role for the promotion, offering his analyst skills and color commentary abilities.
A debate started picking momentum after a fan argued on social media that Cormier would “destroy” the legendary boxer. As it turns out, Cormier agrees with the online poster and believes his wrestling chops give him an advantage in street fights.
In a recent episode of ESPN MMA’s “DC & RC” show, Cormier and co-host Ryan Clark talked about the potential showdown. Cormier backed himself without hesitation but added the caveat that he would never try to inflict damage on Tyson.
“Ryan, I tap in because in a street fight, I’m wrestling everybody, I’m wrestling everybody to the ground, and in a street fight, you grab bottles, you can use everything,” Cormier said. “But RC, more than the fight, because I love Mike, he’s my boy, and I would never raise a finger to harm Mike Tyson.
“The only reason I say that is I’m a little bit jolly. But look at a picture of me on the scale with my chain [while Cormier was weighing in], I know you saw my bling out there; I don’t even wear that anymore.” (ht Sport Bible)
Clark Backed Cormier Without Explicitly Saying It
During the same discussions, Clark took a more cautious path with his answer so as to not piss off the retired boxing Hall of Famer.
He referred to “tapping out,” meaning that he refused to give a clear answer to the question but indicated the reason to be his fear of Tyson as he would’ve favored Cormier in the potential matchup as well.
“I’m tapping out on answering,” Clark laughed. “I understand that street fights involve a lot of things and that DC is a lot meaner than he looks.
“I’m also more scared of current Tyson than I am of Daniel Cormier, so I’m not going to give an answer that may be factually untrue, and I’m also not going to give an answer that may get me beat up in real life, so I abstain from making an answer.”
Tyson Doesn’t Think He Would Succeed at Mixed Martial Arts
For combat sports fans, a hypothetical crossover bout is often an entertaining topic of discussion. Boxing proponents often dismiss the validity of mixed martial arts as a refined sport, whereas MMA community members feel their game to be more suited to reality.
“In a street fight, I’d win,” Liddell said. “I mean, he’s got a puncher’s chance. He’s got a chance to catch me coming in. But other than that, it’s over.”
Tyson has been respectful of MMA and its athletes. In an interview with GQ, he talked against the idea of him becoming a UFC fighter.
“I don’t know what I would do in the UFC, because I watched the UFC a couple of times, and I watched these guys step on people’s feet,” he said.
“And I have the worst feet in the world, and if somebody stepped on my feet, I would totally tap out and just give up. It would be a no-brainer.”