Daniel Cormier will make his latest defense of the UFC Light Heavyweight title against a man who hadn't even competed in the UFC before 2017.
UFC officially announced that Cormier (19-1, 1 NC) will take on #2 Volkan Oezdemir (15-1) in the main event of UFC 220 in Boston at the TD Garden.
Cormier had lost the championship at UFC 214 to longtime rival Jon Jones, but had the title returned to him when Jones failed an in-competition drug test and the fight was overturned to a no-contest.
The Light heavyweight competitor Volkan Oezdemir was recently arrested in Florida on second degree felony charges of aggravated battery with serious bodily injury. Oezdemir had allegedly struck a bar patron by the name of Kevin Cohen, causing the him to lose consciousness for somewhere north of ten minutes.
Despite the recent legal issues surrounding Oezdemir, the UFC President was confident the next shot at the UFC Light Heavyweight Title is coming his way.
“He’s (Oezdemir) probably still gonna fight (for the UFC Light Heavyweight Title), yeah,” White said at a media luncheon.
When the story of Oezdemir’s arrest made the rounds, the UFC Light Heavyweight Champion in Daniel Cormier said that he was willing to fight Alexander Gustafsson or Ovince St. Preux until Oezdemir’s legal situation got cleared up.
While Cormier had already fought and defeated Gustafsson during his title reign, the champion has never been in the Octagon with St. Preux.
Cormier and Oezdemir will take place at UFC 220 this January. Cormier and Oezdemir both competed last at UFC 214, where Cormier fought Jon Jones in a bout changed to a no contest and Oezdemir made quick work of Jimi Manuwa.