Volkan Oezdemir believes that Daniel Cormier will be hungrier than ever ahead of their clash at UFC 220.
Cormier suffered the first stoppage loss of his career at UFC 214 against Jon Jones, which was later overturned to a no contest after “Bones” tested positive for Turinabol.
Although Oezdemir is riding a five-fight win streak into the championship bout, he knows that Cormier will be motivated after being stopped in his last fight.
“He’s the champion right now, but I don’t think he is riding the same momentum as me at the moment,” said Oezdemir at Wednesday’s open workouts. “Right now, I have a five-fight win streak and he’s coming off a loss.
“I’m pretty sure, because he’s a really good competitor, it will give him a lot of hunger and motivation to train hard. I’m expecting to face the best Daniel Cormier. I’m not expecting to face a guy who is 50 percent in shape, so I’m really expecting the best.
“The first time he won the title was also after he was defeated and he fought really well. I know I’m going to face of with the best version of (him).”
Cormier’s wrestling ability will provide a unique test for the heavy-handed Swiss fighter, but he claims he only changed two or three things in preparation for the champion.
“I didn’t switch too much stuff up because I figured what I was doing was successful already,” he said.
“I just focused on one, two or three different things. And of course, you need to be training specifically for that kind of fighter, so training was oriented more towards him and (I made) two or three changes, but it’s basically the same stuff as I was always doing.”
Oezdemir also claimed that there are pros and cons to being ten years Cormier’s junior:
“He definitely won’t be able to do as much as me while he’s training, his body cannot take it for sure. He’s had a long career and mine is shorter for now. He’s also got ten years of experience over me, so you have to balance it. You’ve got to know the benefits for you and the benefits for him,” Oezdemir said.