American Kickboxing Academy coach Javier Mendez hopes Daniel Cormier, one of his most decorated students, sticks to his retirement.
Cormier had been floating his retirement plans for over a year, and made that retirement official after UFC 252, where he came up short by decision against UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic.
While many MMA retirements end up being short-lived, Mendez is hoping Cormier, who has previously held the UFC heavyweight and light heavyweight titles and the Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix title, will stick to his decision to hang up the gloves.
“He needs to stop,” Mendez said of Cormier on Monday’s episode of Hablemos MMA (translated by MMA Junkie). “He’s 41, and the truth is that he’s not the same person I had when he was 27 years old. He’s gone down a bit.
“He’s got so many obligations with interviews, television, and it’s best that he doesn’t fight. It sucks that the fight went that way, and he had to leave like that, but you know, he’s one of the best in the world. What he’s done is very big. He doesn’t need to do any more. He’s not No. 1 or 2 pound-for-pound, but he’s four or seven or around that number. What he did is great. I don’t want him to fight, and he doesn’t want to fight because he only wants to fight for titles. And for what? He’s going to make more money with television and other things, and if he’s not fighting for a title, why fight?
“All the fights that he’s had, his last 11 fights have been for the title. So this time not fighting for a title? I don’t think so. And he wants to help me, help his kid and the wrestlers he has. He’s very proud, and it fills him with joy to be training them so they can be good men.”
Daniel Cormier had an incredible MMA career, emerging as one of the most successful champions in UFC history and becoming a bona fide star for the promotion. Mendez, however, his most proud of his student’s growth as a person.
“He’s one of the greatest ever, and I’m so proud of him,” Mendez said. “I love him with all my heart. He’s a great person. He’s helped many people, and he doesn’t say anything about it. He helps many people with money and other things here and there.
“He’s one of the best,” Mendez said. “He’s a star, right? And many stars do these things for publicity, but not him. He does it because he feels it in his heart. He was a young kid, and he was poor, and many helped him in his wrestling career, and he wants to give back because he knows what others have done for him. He’s a great person and wants to give back as others helped him.”
Do you think Daniel Cormier will stick to his retirement?