Luke Rockhold announces he is ‘done with middleweight,’ bashes light heavyweight rivals

Luke Rockhold

Former Strikeforce and UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold is heading to light heavyweight. After teasing the move for months, Rockhold committed to it on a recent episode of Submission Radio.

“I’m just training every day,” Rockhold said. “I’m lifting, so getting stronger. Getting stronger is the recipe, light heavyweight is the course.”

“I’m coming for these guys, man,” he continued. “I’m just not really impressed with what’s going on right now in that division and I’m tired of compromising my body. And I’m a better fighter where I fight naturally and bigger and I’m long overdue moving up and I’m done with middleweight. It’s time to move up.”

Luke Rockhold will arrive at light heavyweight at a time when fresh contenders like Anthony Smith, Dominick Reyes and Thiago Santos are adding some much needed excitement to the division. Yet he doesn’t seem too impressed with the field of competition in the division.

“Anthony Smith, yeah. I mean, what, (Thiago) Santos came up just recently too. These guys, I’m just not impressed,” Rockhold said. “They’re a little sloppy in so many ways and I see openings and I’m ready to move up. I mean, the rest of the division, there’s a couple of good guys up there, but I don’t see much. I’m ready to come up and I’m ready to shut it down. [Smith] looked like shit. He didn’t look good in his last fight. I’m not gonna say… he looked like a bum, truthfully.”

Luke Rockhold 1-2 in his last three fights, having sandwiched a stoppage win over David Branch between knockout losses to Yoel Romero and Michael Bisping. The former champion captured UFC middleweight gold with a 2015 TKO of Chris Weidman, and has also bested names like Lyoto Machida, Bisping, Tim Boetsch, Costas Philippou, Tim Kennedy, Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza and Jesse Taylor. He’s 16-4 in sum.

How do you think Luke Rockhold will do at light heavyweight?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 12/20/2018.