UFC 230 gets Cormier-Lewis for Heavyweight title, pushes back women’s flyweight fight

October 9, 2018

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto first reported that Daniel Cormier will headline UFC 230 defending his Heavyweight title against Derrick Lewis.  In addition, it appears that the Valentina Shevchenko fight against Sijara Eubanks has been cancelled.  Shevchenko will now face Joanna Jedrzejczyk in Toronto this December.

First, the Cormier-Lewis matchup was a surprise to the Black Beast who did not know that the fight was being set up according to Luke Thomas.  Even if Lewis was playing coy with Thomas, he is coming off of a tough fight against Alexander Volkov this past Saturday.  While he did pull off a miraculous KO of Volkov with just seconds to spare in the third round he admitted not having the proper cardio to fight.  Now, just weeks later, he is scheduled to fight 5 rounds against Cormier.  Although championship pay seems to be the driving factor in his decision to fight, Lewis may not be ready  for what should be the biggest fight in his career.

Next, pushing back the Shevchenko fight an inserting Jedrzejczyk would be a better draw but seems unfair to Eubanks.  While she seemed like an odd choice for the UFC 230 main event, to boot her from the fight seems harsh.

Payout Perspective:

Lewis made a splash Saturday night by taking off his fight shorts post-fight and giving one of the more entertaining interviews in quite some time.  He will be great for the promotion of the fight and during fight week.  But with the actual fight, he may not make it through two rounds.  Lewis picked up over 500,000 Instagram followers after Saturday night and could leverage that into marketing opportunities.  But, to put him in this situation means that the company does not have anyone marketable in the division to challenge for the title.

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