Former UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold’s days in his division are numbered. He has been very vocal about his imminent move to light heavyweight, as his friend and teammate Daniel Cormier moves up to heavyweight before he ends his career. As vocal as he’s been about going to 205, one man has been just as talkative about welcoming him to the division: Alexander Gustafsson. Well, be careful what you wish for, because he’s coming for that ass.
“I don’t see me coming back [to middleweight], man. The weight cut is too much on me. As you get older, your bones get bigger. The last couple cuts have been pretty brutal on me. I had trouble regulating my body temperature and all that shit. It’s not fun. It’s not a fun cut anymore. I’m a different fighter at 205-pounds. That weight cut is taking a lot out of me. We had to make weight and stress out through the staging process like the old days [at UFC 221].
— BJ Penn (@bjpenndotcom) February 13, 2018
“It’s not the best situation. We stayed depleted for a number of hours. I was pretty upset by that whole process.“I like [Alexander Gustafsson’s call out]. I think it was petty coming after me so early [after the knockout loss to Yoel Romero]. I don’t know if he was trying to get under [Daniel Cormier]’s skin, but I’ll be coming. I’ll be coming to 205-pounds. I’m gonna handle my business and you better be sure I’m coming for that ass, too.” — Luke Rockhold speaking on The MMA Hour.
It looks like the only thing that could come between Alexander Gustafsson and Luke Rockhold from fighting is Michael Bisping. He’s the only fight that Rockhold has said would prevent him from moving up to light heavyweight, but the latest word from the same episode of The MMA Hour is that Rockhold is pursuing the same fight with Bisping on at light heavyweight instead of middleweight. We’ll see which fight goes down first, but Bisping still doesn’t have a retirement fight.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/8/2018.