LAS VEGAS – Daniel Cormier is now officially a member of the UFC Hall of Fame’s Modern Wing, and had a few things to get off his chest during his induction speech.
Ever since the official weigh-ins at UFC 210, Cormier has held strong in his conviction that he did not cheat when he recorded his official weight for the second time for his title fight against Anthony Johnson.
On his first attempt, Cormier stepped on the scale at 206.2 pounds, but magically hit the 205-pound limit upon his second try just a few minutes later. The incident became known as “Towelgate.”
Over five years later, Cormier finally revealed what happened that day as a part of a beautiful speech in which he thanked his late parents, his manager Bob Cook, and his teammates like Cain Velasquez, among others for the success in his career.
“Guys, I want to tell you something, because I think right now is the time to be completely transparent,” Cormier said. “I think I may have grabbed the towel in Buffalo.
“I walked back to the back after missing weight by 1.2 pounds, it was 1.2. I tried to give it up guys, trust me, I tried to give it up. I had a pound to lose, they even went and called my wife to try to get me back in the tub. I said, ‘No way, this sh*t’s over.’ She told me, Daniel, just take a hot bath. I go, ‘It’s not that simple.’”
That’s when Cormier’s nutritionist Dan Leith reminded him of a few old tricks wrestlers used to cheat the system when they stepped on the scale a little heavier than expected.
“He goes, ‘DC, do you remember the old wrestling trick?,’” Cormier continued. “I said, can you stand behind me? Because there’s two. You can put your hands behind you and the person can lift you up. He said no, it’s the towel one.
“But do you understand the level of ridiculousness that has to happen in order for that to work? I looked down and could not believe my luck. I am a lucky guy. Even when I would lose, somehow the belt would just come back to me. I was like, I’m a lucky guy. So, I look down, and the commissioner’s down on the floor looking at the scale. There’s a second lady. I look down, and she’s right next to him, so I grab the towel like, ‘Sh*t, we home free!’”
With the weight of “Towelgate” off his back, there was only one more thing to do, and that was to apologize to his opponent at UFC 210, who Cormier went on to defeat by rear-naked choke in the second round.
“’Rumble,’ I’m sorry, my guy,” Cormier said with a smile.