Daniel Cormier's road to redemption begins in New Orleans. A native Louisianian, Cormier announced Wednesday on UFC Tonight that he's slated to fight Ryan Bader on June 6 at UFC Fight Night 68, which takes place in the Bayou State.
"DC is going back to New Orleans and I'm bringing the UFC with me," Cormier said. "I start my trek back to the UFC light heavyweight championship. I can't wait."
A decorated Olympic wrestler, Cormier (15-1) suffered the first loss of his professional mixed martial arts career this past January when he dropped a unanimous decision to UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones in the pair's blockbuster UFC 182 grudge match.
Cormier and Jones traded barbs for months in the lead-up to the fight, even brawling in the lobby of the MGM Grand hotel, then lobbing insults to each other in an off-air video that would eventually become a primary focal point of the event's marketing blitz. And while Cormier achieved early success against Jones come fight night, wading into the clinch and landing heavy shots to steal a round in each judge's eyes, he ultimately faded late in the championship rounds to lose the decision on unanimous 49-46 scorecards.
Now he'll look to get back on track against Bader (19-4), a streaking TUF 8 winner who's won four straight fights to vault his name back into title contention. Currently ranked No. 5 on the UFC's media-generated light heavyweight rankings, Bader punctuated his run with a split decision upset win over Phil Davis at UFC on FOX 14.
UFC President Dana White stated recently that if both Cormier and Swedish light heavyweight contender Alexander Gustafsson win their respective next fights, a match-up between the two is the likely next step to determine the 205-pound division's next title challenger.
UFC Fight Night 68 takes place at New Orleans' Smoothie King Center and airs live on FOX Sports 1.