When asked about the showdown during a recent interview with ESPN, White had the following to say.
“The truth is, going into this fight with all the hype, one of these two that wins the fight definitely goes down as the best heavyweight in UFC history,” White said. “They’re both candidates, you know what I mean? You look at what Stipe has accomplished, and Cormier, in two different weight classes, what this guy has accomplished, he’s one of the greatest of all time.”
“I think it’s more pronounced because I want to win so badly and I feel like I just fumbled so bad,” Cormier said on ESPN (transcript via MMA Fighting). “I fumbled really bad last time. I fumbled in a lot of ways. I was so distracted with everything going on in my life and I was so focused on coaching and all these other things that I kind of just fumbled. I fumbled bad and I wasn’t prepared as I needed to and I got tired. Like, I got tired. I can admit it. I got tired. He hit me with those shots in the end, he hurt me to the body and he hurt me to the head and I didn’t react because my body couldn’t react because I was so tired, and I will not allow that to happen again. If he ever finds a way to hurt me, I need to fight back like I did in every other instance in my entire life. I didn’t do that last time and it sits with me every single day.
“That’s why everybody is like, ‘Man, you’ve always got people around you.’ Because it sucks to be around my thoughts,” Cormier added. “When I’m just stuck with my thoughts a lot of time, I start thinking about the things that I didn’t do that got me beat last time.”