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Daniel Cormier’s life as a former mixed martial artist won’t begin with surgery to his eye, the former two-division UFC champion told Ariel Helwani on EPSN Monday.

Cormier was on the receiving end of an accidental eye-poke in the third round of his final career bout against Stipe Miocic last month. The incident was missed by referee Marc Goddard, who apologised on social media soon after the fight, and Cormier made it through to the end of the fight with his eye almost completely swollen shut.

Thankfully, though, the damage appears to be healing on its own which means that ‘DC’ will most likely avoid having to deal with surgery.

“It was concerning initially, because they did not know how severe the impact was going to be going forward. They didn’t know if I wasn’t going to need surgery and do all these other things,” Cormier told Helwani, as noted by MMA Junkie. “But luckily I was able to recover, and I feel better, and I prefer not to have surgery. I don’t want to go under the knife for everything. If it’s something that I can avoid, if it’s an option to not do it in that way, I’ll always use that option.

“It was very bad initially. The first week-and-a-half or so, it was really bad. It wasn’t open. It was completely blurry. But now it feels like I have an eyelash in it. I went and saw the doctor last week, and he told me that I’m probably not going to need surgery. It was bad for like a week, and then it started to get better. I got medicine, antibiotics and stuff that kind of goes into my eye three times a day.

“It’s starting to get better and better and better. It feels good but just feels like there’s something in there. Like, you know when you get an eyelash in there and you can’t get it out? It’s like that. It’s not bad, though, not bothering me that much.”

“You can almost get used to pretty much anything if you get used to it so long,” Cormier said. “I’m almost used to it. When my eye is opening, it’s like a little bit smaller, but it’s not as bad as it was the day of the fight.”