Bellator champion Ryan Bader shares advice for Tom Aspinall amidst frustrations over undisputed UFC title fight

By Harry Kettle - February 14, 2024

Bellator heavyweight king Ryan Bader has given Tom Aspinall some advice regarding his pursuit of an undisputed UFC title fight.

Tom Aspinall raises his hands

For months now, Tom Aspinall has been asking for an undisputed heavyweight championship opportunity. He is the current interim champion, with Jon Jones holding the undisputed gold.

Jones has made it clear that he’s holding out for a bout with Stipe Miocic. Aspinall, as you can imagine, isn’t too pleased with that.

RELATED: Tom Aspinall officially moving on from Jon Jones, Stipe Miocic fights: “It’s not happening”

In a recent interview, former UFC talent Ryan Bader weighed in on the situation.

Bader’s Aspinall advice

“It’s kind of a tricky situation, right?” Bader told MMA Mania. “You have the interim champ, should be proud of that. It’s not your fault that they made an interim champ, but you want the real thing. You want that undisputed championship. To go out there and win that [interim title], you’re kind of on the shelf for a while, kind of waiting for two other legends in their own right with Stipe and Jones. They have the ability to kind of call the shots a little bit. I think both at this point in their careers, either one could be done after their fight. That’s kind of the deal there. I think they deserve the right to wait for a fight that they want like that.

“In Tom’s shoes, what do you do?” he continued. “I think you wait because you never know. You go out there to fight … would the interim championship be on the line? What is that? Has that been done? I don’t know. Then you lose and you lose your chance of fighting a Stipe or Jones. You’re believing in yourself and you believe you can beat these guys and everything then you lose that shot.

“If I were in his shoes, it’s frustrating, for sure,” Bader concluded. “I would just train my ass off and kind of wait for that opportunity. At the end of the day, you want to get paid as much as you can. There’s a lot of different variables going on.”

Quotes via MMA Mania

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