Amid calls from newly-minted interim heavyweight champion, Tom Aspinall for fellow division gold holder, Jon Jones to be stripped of his crown amid his absence through injury, UFC CEO, Dana White claims the Endicott native must stand opposite former championship holder, Stipe Miocic in his return to the Octagon first and foremost.
Jones, the current heavyweight champion and former pound-for-pound number one, was scheduled to headlined UFC 295 at the beginning of last month in a Madison Square Garden homecoming, however, a brutal pectoral tendon tear suffered ahead of a slated bout with ex-titleholder, Miocic, forced the shelving of the blockbuster clash.
And as a result, an interim title was once again introduced into the heavyweight division, with the above-mentioned Atherton native, Aspinall landing the interim crown with a blistering opening round KO win over Russian contender, Sergei Pavlovich in a co-main event tile clash.
In the weeks following his title victory in New York, Aspinall has called for both Jon Jones to be stripped of the heavyweight title, and called for his own title fight with former two-time champion, Miocic, claiming he wants to feature in some capacity at a monumental UFC 300 card in April of next year.
Dana White remains firm on Jon Jones – Stipe Miocic title fight
However, as far as White is concerned, Aspinall’s hopes are set to fall on deaf ears, with the promotional CEO confirming Jones will make good on plans to fight Miocic in his return to the Octagon first and foremost.
“The Stipe (Miocic) fight has to happen,” Dana White told assembled media following UFC Austin. “You know, both of those guys deserve it. Jon – you’ve got the greatest mixed martial artist of all time versus the greatest heavyweight of all time. And they’ve paid their dues, they’ve done the thing. These two wanna fight each other. It’s gonna happen.”
“Whoever wins, we’ll see what they decide to do after that,” White continued. “And then we’ll go from there.”
Do you still want to see Jon Jones fight Stipe Miocic in his return?