Derrick Lewis claims he's getting a title shot because Daniel Cormier is afraid of an old rival 3 years ago

Derrick Lewis claims he's getting a title shot because Daniel Cormier is afraid of an old rival

Derrick Lewis faces the biggest fight of his career on Saturday night when he challenges Daniel Cormier for the heavyweight title at UFC 230.

"The Black Beast" was granted the main event slot at Madison Square Garden following his dramatic last gasp knockout win over Alexander Volkov earlier this month at UFC 229.

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However, the Houston native has admitted that he feels he doesn't deserve the short notice fight and that former champion, Stipe Miocic should have been granted a rematch instead of him.

He told reporters earlier this month though that the opportunity was too good for him to pass up.

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"It's just one that I can't pass up, because I know there's a lot of guys in this division that probably deserve a shot more than I’m getting," Lewis said.

"I probably don't deserve a shot more than Stipe, who should have got the shot. But ain't no telling the next time I'm gonna get the opportunity, so I gotta jump on it anyways."

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With the fight only three days out now, Lewis has again addressed the issue of why he is fighting Cormier, and not someone else. Only this time, "The Black Beast" claims that the champion is ducking another opponent. One that he has a long history with.

"The reason I think he took the fight with me is because Jon Jones was already fighting in (December),"

"He didn’t want to wait until January and hear all the media talk about, ‘Why is Cormier not fighting for the 205 belt?’ They’re already saying he’s basically scared to fight Jones right now, anyway.

"He feels like it would be perfect to fight a guy like me that don’t have as much skills on short notice before the Jones fight and he thinks it’s going to be an easy fight for him." Lewis told reporters.

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The heavyweight contender later doubled down on this, claiming that Cormier is indeed afraid to fight Jon Jones.

"Yeah, I think he’s scared to fight Jones. The guy beat him twice."

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A lot of the talk going into the fight is whether the champion is taking the threat that Lewis poses seriously considering that he's on the record saying that his hand is still injured.

For all his Instagram antics, Lewis maintains that he is taking this fight serious, and that's all that matters to him.

"I don’t care if he’s taking this serious or not,” Lewis said.

"I know I am. I’m pretty sure somewhat he’s taking it serious."