Daniel Cormier: UFC champion Ilia Topuria’s current approach ‘not coming off great’

Daniel Cormier is not a fan of UFC featherweght champion Ilia Topuria’s recent demands.

Prior to claiming the 145-pound title with a knockout of Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 298, Topuria dismissed the likes of Max Holloway and Brian Ortega as potential title challengers.

Topuria (15-0 MMA, 7-0 UFC) eventually welcomed the idea of Holloway (26-7 MMA, 22-7 UFC) but put a stipulation of Holloway’s BMF title being on the line. Holloway knocked out Justin Gaethje with an iconic last-second finish to capture the BMF title at UFC 300.

Cormier is confused by Topuria’s approach.

“You need the name that comes from the generation before,” Cormier said on his YouTube channel. “Ilia seems to be taking another approach. I don’t know exactly what it is, though, because he said he wasn’t going to fight Brian Ortega, he said he wasn’t going to fight Max Holloway, and now it sounds like he’s not wanting to fight Alexander Volkanovski again.

“Those are the names from the featherweight past. He doesn’t seem to want to fight those guys. I don’t know when looking at those rankings who would be next. Now, he’s agreed to fight Max Holloway. …He’ll fight Max but only if Max’s BMF title is on the line too.”

Cormier thinks Topuria needs to acknowledge Holloway as a legit challenger and isn’t sure if he has as much pull as he thinks.

“He has to make a statement saying, ‘This is what I want as the champ’ and then put the ball in Max’s court to deny it,” Cormier said. “But right now, it’s not coming off great. He’s batting away all these guys with no clear idea of who else there is. … It’s just weird. He’s not telling us what’s next, but he’s saying no to a lot of things that can be right now. I don’t know that you can do that as the champ.”

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie