Daniel Cormier successfully defended his title in impressive fashion at #UFC210 last evening with a submission victory over Anthony Johnson, but with the dust barely settled, the conversation has turned to who he fights next.
Two men, Jimi Manuwa and Jon Jones, appear to be the ones currently in the running for the next shot at Cormier. Both were sat cageside last evening to witness the champion retain his title in the second round.
While celebrating inside the Octagon after his fight with Johnson, Cormier made a point of going to over to Manuwa and telling him both on and off camera, "you don't want any of this".
It appears the dialogue between the two continued in the backstage area and Manuwa was asked about what was said in an interview with UFC on Fox.
"He was trying to run some stupid jokes like he can pick on me, but that's not happening--I don't get picked on," Manuwa said.
Manuwa was then asked if he felt disrespected by the champion and he vehemently denied it. Instead, the Londoner pointed out that the champion was talking about him and speaking his name. In Manuwa's mind at least, that can only be a good thing.
"Not really, he knows, it shows that he's noticing me," Manuwa said, when asked if he felt disrespected by Cormier's comments. "He knows that for me it's just one punch, one shot, one kill and he knows that as well. He's trying to find and see if he can get into my mind but that's not happening--it's not happening."
The number #4 ranked UFC light heavyweight then revealed that the two hadn't exchanged any words before this evening and that it was the first dialogue the had ever engaged in.
"No, no we didn't," Manuwa said, when asked if they'd spoken before. "That's why I know that he's noticing me. I can tell he's rattled."
Manuwa then made it known why he was in Buffalo last evening and said it was all about letting whoever won the main event last night that he was the rightful number one contender.
"To let these people know," Manuwa said. "It didn't matter who won, whether it was Rumble or DC. It's my time. it's my time and these people know."
Much will of course depend on the return of Jon Jones who was also in attendance last evening in Buffalo. With Anthony Johnson now retired, one person seems destined to miss out.