Stipe Miocic is hoping a victory over Daniel Cormier at UFC 226 this weekend will finally see him get the respect he feels he deserves.
The American already holds the UFC record for most consecutive title defenses by a heavyweight champion, yet he still feels people doubt him.
“Just like every fight – I feel like everyone’s not really giving me a chance, like I’m a washed-up fighter or something like that,” Miocic told reporters on Monday in Los Angeles.
The bout with light heavyweight champion Cormier on Saturday at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena offers him the chance to significantly boost his brand.
“DC has fought the best in the world,” Miocic said. “He’s beat the best in the world. He’s an amazing fighter and to beat him it’s going to be amazing.”
“I’m super excited (about) the whole matchup. We bring fight skill sets to the table and people are super excited for this like I am.”
— UFC (@ufc) July 2, 2018
Despite being a UFC world champion Miocic still works as an EMT in Cleveland, and unlike other UFC fighters such as Cormier, Conor McGregor and Anderson Silva, he is far from a household name.
Another successful title defence may help to change that.
“I think every fight you get more respect,” he said. “I think so and some people are going to hate me and some people are going to love me. There’s nothing I can do about that. I just hope more people love me.”