Dominick Cruz isn’t thrilled with Daniel Cormier’s performance at the commentary desk, although he admits he hasn’t listened to much lately.
Ahead of his bantamweight fight with Pedro Munhoz at UFC 269 this Saturday, Cruz was invited on media day to assess the skills of his fellow commentators and criticized Cormier for his lack of preparation while making the praise of the game man Jon Anik.
“Anik, for me, I watch Anik do so much homework before a fight,” said Cruz. “People have no idea how much homework he has to do to prepare for it. Most of the congratulations for me really go to him. He guides us through the show with his way of speaking.
“When it comes to ‘DC’ I usually cut it off. I love DC, he’s my friend, but for me in my experience he doesn’t do homework. He wants to come in and out, get the job done, make his money, and I think he cares about us, but it’s just different. He does not do the preparation in my experience. He could now, I hope he watches a movie about me this time around so he knows what I’m doing and why I’m doing it, but I’m not going to hold my breath on that for sure.
Cormier, a former two-division UFC champion, has received both positive and negative reviews for his commentary work, with supporters pointing to his enthusiasm and caged experience and detractors criticizing him for a lack of preparation as Cruz suggests it and also a lack of knowledge when it comes to scoring fights.
As Cruz is quick to give his honest opinion of on-air talent in DC, he has also acknowledged the difficulty of the job and that he himself is constantly working to improve himself.
“Honestly, I’m never perfect, so there’s a list of, I don’t know, what, 400, 600 fighters and not everyone will agree with what I’m saying either,” said Cruz. . “So it’s all about perspective in there. DC is a gifted athlete and I think [Michael] Bisping does a lot of homework. I think he watches a lot of movies and I think there are some people who watch the movie and I count that because I’m studying the movie.
“The reason I’m studying film is because it’s bigger than me. I’m not here to speak to hear myself speak and to be right, I’m here to support the athletes and explain why they’re great and what makes them great, and in order to do that I have to watch a movie. I need to see what they do against different styles and how they match up and what creates the openings they create in these fights and why. I don’t really call or text any of them because they’re just doing their job. They see it as they see it, it’s their interpretation, that doesn’t make it a fact, and I know they’re doing their best honestly. I know I’m doing my best and I’m not always perfect.
In addition to working with Anik, Cormier, and Bisping, Cruz regularly shared the office with longtime colorist Joe Rogan. Although Rogan only works on UFC pay-per-views, he remains one of the most popular figures in MMA both because of his commentary work and his podcast, and Cruz considers Rogan to be a staple. of the UFC viewing experience.
Cruz specifically pointed out that Rogan was able to work with less filter due to his background as a comedian. He also had a lot of great things to say about his other broadcast partners – even Cormier.
“The sport itself, yeah, maybe we know more because we’ve been there, but Joe Rogan brings a special quality,” said Cruz. “I hope he will do it next to me forever, to be honest. I really do. I love working with him, I love him as a human being and what he represents right now, especially nowadays, is a powerful human being. Anik, same. I want to work with Anik for the rest. If he quits, I say, ‘I’ll slap you in the face if you quit. I need you. Don’t you dare.
“Me and Bisping, do I really need to talk about this?” It’s a back and forth. He’s just fun. He is my friend. I’ll never forget Bisping came to one of my – I lost one of my fights and he came to my after party and he party with me all night. I’ll always have space in my heart with Bisping whether people know it or not, I love this guy. DC, again, we go back and forth and bicker like brothers because he’s like my brother to me. I love him too. I just need him to watch a movie.