Stipe Miocic has made it clear he wants his UFC heavyweight belt back, and now the path is clearer for the American-Croatian.
UFC president Dana White said on Friday that the 38-year-old would get his chance to reclaim his title soon.
“Well, Jon Jones made it very clear that he has no interest in fighting Stipe, so it doesn’t really matter. What you do is you do the fight with Derrick Lewis and Francis and then Stipe gets the winner,” White said on the The Jake Asman Show.
After Ngannou beat Miocic in March for the belt, a potential blockbuster fight with Jones was talked about but White says negotiations have gone nowhere.
“Jon Jones is under contract. He has a contract. We have tried to work with him and see if there are things we can do to make him want to fight at heavyweight. But if he doesn’t want to fight at heavyweight, he doesn’t want to at the end of the day. What are you going to do? You can’t make the guy fight,” said White.
White says that Derrick Lewis is the No. 1 contender and a fight will be made between him and Ngannou with Miocic taking on the winner in a title fight.
Miocic has made it clear that he wants his title back.
“I wanna get back what’s mine. I hate losing more than anyone, I am the most competitive person you will ever meet. It burns (the loss),” he said in April.
Miocic, who weighed 234 pounds in his last fight, is currently bulking up so he is better prepared.
“I’m trying (to gain weight). It’s bulking season so trying to eat as much as I can to get big and strong. I’m trying to get to 250 pounds. I am really gonna try and stick to getting a bit more weight and mass. 20 pounds will help, I will feel a lot stronger. He (Francis) is a big due, no question about it,” said Stipe.
Miocic and Ngannou have met twice now and a trilogy makes sense with the score at 1-1. Miocic has the most heavyweight title defenses in UFC history and deserves another shot.