Rising UFC light heavyweight title contender Volkan Oezdemir is on an absolute tear. The fairly unknown 27-year-old has taken the UFC’s 205-pound division by storm since joining the promotion earlier this year. In just three Octagon appearances (all wins), “No Time” has made every Octagon moment count, knocking out the likes of Jimi Manuwa and Misha Cirkunov in a total of 70 seconds.
While Oezdemir’s production against some of the light heavyweight’s best would be enough to earn him a title shot in another division, current 205-pound champion Jon Jones is likely to meet Alexander Gustafsson in a rematch instead of defending the belt against someone like “No Time.” So if Jones, as well as Gustafsson, is off limits, Oezdemir will have to settle for the next best thing.
“[Daniel] Cormier could be an option in the future because he’s going to have to come back in the scene,” Oezdemir said in a recent interview with MMA Digest. “Even though he comes off a loss, he’s still going to be the number one contender. We tried to work something out [with Alexander Gustafsson] for UFC Poland in the main event, but like I told you, he’s concentrating on fighting [Jon] Jones.”
“It could be a good opportunity also,” Oezdemir added about a potential clash with Cormier. “He’s the second guy in the division. He was the title holder for awhile also, but I think maybe he needs some time off after the rebound.”
Remember, Cormier is coming off a crushing knockout loss to Jones back at UFC 214 this past July in Anaheim, California. He’s probably going to need a little more time off before taking on someone as hot as Oezdemir, but “DC” has expressed interest to resume his UFC career.
With a depleted light heavyweight roster to pick from, UFC matchmakers may have no other option but to book a Cormier vs. Oezdemir showdown for sometime later this year. It would obviously be the biggest test of Oezdemir’s career, while giving Cormier a chance to reclaim his divisional footing and begin his journey back towards title contention.