October 02, 2012
On Sept. 19, Frank Mir had to pull out of his bout with Daniel Cormier in Strikeforce. On Oct. 2, Cormier still has no opponent for his main event bout for the Nov. 3 Strikeforce event in Oklahoma City.
The fight was offered to Matt Mitrione. He turned it down, which drew the ire of UFC president Dana White.
"Yeah, (Mitrione) turned the fight down," an upset White said following Saturday's UFC on FUEL TV 5. "It's (expletive) insane. It makes no sense to me. I'm a little bummed out by it.
"Listen, you don't want big opportunities, I hear you. I get it, then," continued White of Mitrione, who sports a 5-1 record in his young MMA career, but hasn't fought in nearly a year. "All I can say is, I guess he doesn't want big opportunities. I get it. Duly noted."
Mitrione explained to Bloody Elbow why he didn't take the fight, but explanations don't always do much for White.
It was an honor to get that call, and I would love to fight Daniel Cormier, but I'm just not ready right now. He has Olympic level wrestling, and although I have spent a great deal of time working on my wresting, I don't feel it would be my best fight back after such a long layoff. UFC worked hard to get me a fight this year, but my old opponent had visa issues and it caused additional time out of the cage. Wrestling is, by far, my weakest skill. I'm working hard on my wrestling, but it would be a huge weakness against me in a short notice fight against Cormier.
Still, Mitrione's refusal leaves Cormier without an opponent. With time to the fight ticking away, Cormier suggested Pat Barry.
— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) September 30, 2012
Barry tweeted that he would take the fight, but it hasn't been offered.
Since every heavyweight in a contract with Zuffa but Cormier is now in the UFC, the heavyweight to face Cormier will come from the UFC's ranks. Now, the trick will be to find a fighter willing to take the bout on a month's notice who doesn't already have a fight coming up. He will also need to be convinced to fight on Showtime and face Cormier, one of the best-credentialed wrestlers in MMA.
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