UFC president Dana White may not believe Stipe Miocic’s next fight should be against Jon Jones, but he does think his potential move up to heavyweight is an interesting one.
Miocic finally put an end to his trilogy against Daniel Cormier on Saturday night, beating the former champion via unanimous decision in the main event of UFC 252. Now, however, as is the nature of MMA fans, the attention has turned towards what the future may hold for the Ohio-based star.
During his post-fight press conference at the weekend, White gave his thoughts on the idea of Jon Jones moving up from light heavyweight to square off with Stipe – leapfrogging Francis Ngannou in the process.
“Francis is definitely next,” White said (via MMA Fighting). “You can’t jump over Francis.”
“Francis has been out there destroying everybody, and if you look at how long ago it was that he got that title shot, he’s worked his way back,” White added. “It belongs to Francis Ngannou. But yeah, Jon Jones going to heavyweight is very interesting.”
While he may not be willing to commit to Miocic vs. Jones, White has spoken about what fights he’d like to see the latter have before he officially retires from the sport.
“It depends what he does,” White said of Jones. “Does he move up to heavyweight? Does he stay at [light heavyweight]? I mean, if he stays at light heavyweight, he’s gotta fight [Dominick] Reyes again. You have to see the Reyes fight again.
“If he moves up to heavyweight, there’s a lot of interesting [options],” White added, listing some fights he likes for Jones in the heavyweight division. “He could fight [Daniel] Cormier, he could fight Stipe [Miocic], depending on what happens on Saturday. He could fight Francis Ngannou.”
It’s clear to see that Ngannou has earned the right to square off against Miocic for the second time, whereas at 205 pounds, Dominick Reyes is waiting to see whether or not he’ll get another crack at Jon Jones’ title.
The expectation is that the Miocic vs. Ngannou fight could go very differently to the first time they met back at UFC 220, when Stipe was able to completely control and dominate Ngannou from start to finish.
What do you want to see next for Stipe Miocic and Jon Jones?