Morning Report: Stipe Miocic would have preferred bigger cage at UFC 252 but is ‘not going to cry about it’

Morning Report: Stipe Miocic would have preferred bigger cage at UFC 252 but is ‘not going to cry about it’

In a little over two weeks, UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic and former heavyweight and light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier will meet for the third and final time, but this time, things will be different. Because of the continuing coronavirus pandemic, when the trilogy fight between the two legends takes place, this time it will happen at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, which means that instead of fighting in the normal 30-foot cage, Miocic and Cormier will be fighting in the smaller 25-foot cage.

The difference between the two cages has been the topic of much conversation since the UFC began hosting fights at the APEX, with many people believing that the smaller cage leads to more action-packed fights and a higher number of finishes. But while the fans may love the more aggressive cage, not everyone is as excited that UFC 252 will be employing it.

Speaking to ESPN recently, Stipe Miocic revealed that he originally lobbied for the UFC to use the 30-foot cage instead for the bout, but ultimately, that did not happen.

“A bigger cage is better of course,” Miocic said. “It is what it is. I’m not going to cry about it. I definitely tried to get a bigger cage, but it wasn’t in the cards. What are you gonna do? I’m not worried. My [gym’s] cage is the same size, and I’ve been working on everything.”

Having fought twice before, the smaller cage would seem to favor Daniel Cormier in this bout. Cormier certainly seems to think so and made no bones about it when the decision was announced, saying he intended to use the more confined space to wrestle Miocic. Even Miocic seemed to agree that being a wrestler “would be better” in the smaller cage but he also insists that he’s not worried.

“There are a lot more angles and stuff, and getting pushed against the cage, you don’t have that extra five feet,” Miocic said. “It’s a little bit different. We’ve definitely been training wrestling more. He said to bring my wrestling shoes, so he’ll definitely try to wrestle me, but every fight starts standing, don’t forget that.

“We’ll see. Take me down then. We’re wrestling? I thought we were fighting, but whatever.”

Fight they will. Soon, Miocic-Cormier 3 will join the ranks of UFC heavyweight title trilogies and, according to both Cormier and UFC President Dana White, more is on the line than just the heavyweight title. Both men believe this fight will determine the greatest heavyweight in UFC history, and Miocic agrees, though he’s not that concerned about that part of it.

“I mean, yeah I think so,” Miocic said. “I definitely do. I think it’s a big fight. We have credentials, we’ve done a lot, and it’s a big fight. . .

“I guess so. I don’t know. Everyone’s been saying that (it will determine the greatest heavyweight ever), so whoever wins this fight is, apparently. I’m just ready for this fight. I’m not worried about what you call me after, baddest man on the planet, the greatest of all time, I don’t care right now. I’m just here to win.”

UFC 252 takes place on August 15 at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nev.

MUST-READ STORIES

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Torn. Coach: Darren Till suffered MCL tear in Robert Whittaker fight at UFC on ESPN 14.

Buchecha. Grappling legend Marcus ‘Buchecha’ Almeida inks contract with ONE Championship.

VIDEO STEW

What the Heck, with Esparza, Kape, Boser, Millender, and Ronson.

Invicta highlights.

Five fighters you should know heading into this weekend.

Promoting the rematch.

Cerrone training camp.

LISTEN UP

Heavy Hands. Discussing what happened at UFC Fight Island 3 and what’s to come this weekend.

Believe You Me. Michael Bisping interviews Jack Hermansson.

SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE

Surely he’s not talking about Chimaev. . .

I accept!

— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) July 30, 2020

Beg me. https://t.co/s9Um6EuEIL

— Khamzat Chimaev (@KChimaev) July 30, 2020

Call your uncle @danawhite I will be ready. https://t.co/OPponlhORm

— Khamzat Chimaev (@KChimaev) July 30, 2020

Agreed.

There is no way on gods green earth that Conor is fighting Khazmat

— Bitcoin Ben (@Benaskren) July 30, 2020

What fights besides Nate or Jorge make sense for Conor??

— Bitcoin Ben (@Benaskren) July 30, 2020

Gotta love his enthusiasm.

I’m getting bored, please @danawhite give me @NateDiaz209 @GamebredFighter @TheNotoriousMMA same night. I can smash all these guys… I’m not cocky guy I’m just confident. I understand if they don’t want to fight me.

— Khamzat Chimaev (@KChimaev) July 30, 2020

Darren Till.

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What a week! Just reflecting on my chess match of a fight with rob? Enjoyed the competition, Few things I hesitated on & should of capitalised. It was a close close match as everyone said, You could of gave it 3-2 me, 3-2 rob? Either way is completely right I feel! The 5th round the takedowns maybe didn’t count because I sprung back up each time therefore nullifying them… But I ain’t crying over spilled milk. Rob’s a terrific fighter & hats off to him, We will get it done again. As for me! I’ve got some time off from a certain knee from a certain someone… rob? I told you all before this fight that I’m just getting started and I meant it… I’m going to become the world champion I’m going to become a legend & I’m going to become a role model for young aspiring fighters everywhere. As soon as I’m back this year I want to fight 2-3 times as quick as I can… Thanks for the support, thanks for the hate. Thanks for everything!! ADELASAGNE!!! I’ll see you soon boi Thank you my team, my family & my friends for the support, Especially @teamkaobon & @mtkglobal The Gorilla…

A post shared by @ darrentill2 on Jul 30, 2020 at 10:24am PDT

Beef.

Keep talking shit, it will be nice to go back and look at all this nonsense after I beat you https://t.co/RGiuIvZap5

— Petr “No Mercy” Yan (@PetrYanUFC) July 30, 2020

Are you going to punch me harder or something? The truth hurts sometimes. I’m trying to think, but I can’t remember another champ who didn’t beat ONE guy in the Top 5 to fight for a title.
“That must be soooooo frustrating” https://t.co/e4tMgs6MpB pic.twitter.com/I4xLgPpFjn

— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) July 30, 2020

This is a banger.

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Спустя два года с третьей попытки этот бой все-таки состоится

A post shared by Zabit (@zabit_magomedsharipov) on Jul 30, 2020 at 11:22am PDT

This is weird but both men are for it and I think I am too?

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Studying for @ufc 254 with @coachdukeroufus @danawhite #ufc254 #givemethe #teampettis

A post shared by Anthony Pettis (@showtimepettis) on Jul 30, 2020 at 10:16pm PDT

Ponzinibbio finally ready to get back?

I am ready today @AliAbdelaziz00

— Santiago Ponzinibbio (@SPonzinibbioMMA) July 30, 2020

FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Yorgan De Castro (6-1) vs. Carlos Felipe (8-1); UFC Fight Night, Oct. 3.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Thanks for reading and see y’all on Monday.

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