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 pic.twitter.com/sA5XKuNXR4— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) July 11, 2019
The 2019 ESPYs took place on Wednesday at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. This marked the the first time that MMA was given a separate category. In previous years, the best fighter category was mixed between boxers and mixed martial artists.
Cormier’s 2018 was a memorable campaign. He first defended his light heavyweight belt with a second-round stoppage of Volkan Oezdemir at UFC 220 and then became a simultaneous two-division champion with a first-round knockout of Stipe Miocic to claim the heavyweight crown at UFC 226. After relinquishing the 205-pound title, “DC” defended the heavyweight strap with a second-round submission of Derrick Lewis at UFC 230.
“I won the ESPY for best fighter of the year tonight,” Cormier wrote on Twitter. 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.”
Three MMA athletes captured the ESPY for Best Fighter in previous years: Ronda Rousey in 2015, Conor McGregor in 2016 and Demetrious Johnson in 2017.
Cormier will return to the Octagon at UFC 241, where he will defend the heavyweight championship in a rematch against Miocic at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., on Aug. 17.