07/11/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/11/2019 15:13
By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | July 11, 2019, 5:06 p.m. (ET)
Two-time Olympic wrestler Daniel Cormier became the first-ever winner of the ESPY Award as the Best MMA Fighter, when he was honored live on ABC during The ESPYS on Wednesday night.
Cormier was selected from a field of four finalists, including his 2008 Olympic wrestling teammate Henry Cejudo, as well as Amanda Nunes and Israel Adensanya.
Cormier quickly posted his thoughts on Twitter, sharing his joy with the world. He posted a photo with the ESPY Award and wrote:
'I won the ESPY for MMA fighter of the year tonight. I am humbled, I have the greatest support system ever. From my family, to my coaches, managers and partners, we've all made this happen. And to the fans that voted I love each and every one of you. Thank you DC.'
Cormier is one of only four UFC fighters to earn the title of 'Champ-Champ,' for holding the UFC champion belt in two different weight classes at the same time. Cejudo is also one of the select athletes to reach this amazing achievement.
Currently Cormier holds the heavyweight champion belt in UFC. In 2018, he defended his belts three times. Included were knockouts of Volkan Oezdemir and Stipe Miocic, plus a victory by submission over Derrick Lewis.
The UFC has announced that Cormier will defend his heavyweight belt in August during UFC 241, in rematch against Miocic in Anaheim, Calif.
Cormier represented the USA in freestyle wrestling at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece and the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China. Cormier won a 2007 World bronze medal, and competed on four U.S. Senior World Teams. In 1995, he was a Cadet World bronze medalist in Greco-Roman.
He was a high school star in Louisiana, a junior college star at Colby CC in Kansas and an NCAA All-American for Oklahoma State.