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Daniel Cormier Says He’s Had ‘Very, Very Early’ Discussions to Join WWE

Daniel Cormier reacts after defeating Derrick Lewis by submission in the second round of a heavyweight mixed martial arts bout at UFC 230, early Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018, at Madison Square Garden in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Julio Cortez/Associated Press

Daniel Cormier might be the next UFC star to make the jump to WWE. Just don’t immediately expect him to step inside the ring.

We’ve been talking,” Cormier said of discussions with WWE officials, per Sports Illustrated‘s Justin Barrasso. “We’ve spoken to some of the people over there in very, very early conversations. WWE is a company I’ve watched and loved my entire life.”

The former heavyweight and light heavyweight champion added that he’d prefer to start in the commentary booth before pondering an in-ring role.

A number of MMA stars have exchanged the Octagon for the squared circle. Ken Shamrock and Dan Severn were two of the earliest examples, with Brock Lesnar, Ronda Rousey, Shayna Baszler and Cain Velasquez all following their paths. In Lesnar’s case, he rose to prominence in wrestling before trying his hand in the UFC and returning to WWE.

The pipeline hasn’t stopped flowing completely. However, WWE released Velasquez after he wrestled in two matches, while the company let Lesnar’s contract expire in August. The moves came after WWE announced in April it was cutting back on some expenses amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

It’s not hard to see why the promotion would make an exception for Cormier. He has made a seamless transition to announcing for the UFC, though nobody can say for sure how he’d do in WWE given how much Vince McMahon micromanages his commentary teams.

Fox already offered him a spot on its WWE Backstage show last year, which he declined.

Cormier, a former champion in amateur wrestling, would be an especially good fit if Raw Underground will feature more prominently going forward.

Given the 41-year-old’s passion for WWE and his retirement from competition, it might only be a matter of time before he winds up on Raw or SmackDown.

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