UFC 241 Prediction: DC vs. Stipe

I don’t feel compelled to thank Dana White very often, but in this case, I will. Thanks, Dana.

We are blessed with a heavyweight match that could turn out to be as epic as any we’ve seen in quite some time, Cormier vs. Miocic II!

The UFC Odds show Cormier stepping into the octagon as a -145 favorite over Stipe. Last time around, Stipe was a heavy favorite. His closing line was -225. But we all know how that ended. DC won by knockout in the first round. 

But will that happen again? Stipe Miocic hasn’t stepped into the eight-sided ring since his loss to Cormier roughly a year ago. He had a legitimate case for an immediate rematch but didn’t get one. Let’s look at it this way, Prior to that loss, he had the most title defenses in the history of heavyweights in the UFC and was on a six-fight win steak. But instead of getting the rematch, the UFC gave the next title shot to Derrick Lewis. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Black Beast, but did he really deserve that fight more than Stipe? That’s more than debatable. 

The Rematch

UFC 241 is a wrecking ball that will come crashing through our television sets. Not only do we get Stipe and DC, we also get Anthony Pettis versus Nate Diaz. Pettis vs. Diaz is going to be a war. Both have extremely tough jaws and this Welterweight bout could end up in a bloody mess. 

Daniel Cormier vs. Stipe Miocic, on the other hand, may end up stopping in the first round once more. There is just too much power coming from both of these big-men. One thing that concerns me is the fact that DC caught Stipe in the clinch in UFC 226 for the KO. All three of Miocic’s losses have come by KO, which leads me to believe that his jaw is the more brittle of the two. That said, out of Stipe Miocic‘s 18 wins, 14 have come by way of pummeling his opponents into KO status. So, this fight could go either way.

But has Stipe taken too much time off? One thing we learned about DC in the Lewis fight is that he’s slippery and smart. For a hot second there in the second round, it looked like Lewis was going to manhandle and hammer DC, but DC’s wrestling is just too good, and he got the submission.

Although Cormier is perhaps the best heavyweight wrestler, but this skill is somewhat mitigated against a guy like Stipe, who has excellent takedown defense and is a good wrestler in his own right. But if they do get into an exchange (they will) and Miocic takes another heavy overhand right, will he be able to stay conscious? After taking a couple of really hard knockouts, something changes for most fighters; it becomes easier to turn shut their lights out with a hefty punch. And after sustaining three as Stipe has, I think that is where he is at.

The Main Event at UFC 241 will come down to durability, and even at 41 years of age, Cormier has the stronger chin.