Jon Jones moving to heavyweight is one of, if not the biggest division jumps in UFC history. The former light heavyweight champion has been training, bulking up, and getting stronger for his heavyweight division debut. Since he first hinted at it a few years ago the speculation about who he would face has been hot and heavy. The consensus name was eventually former UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic but that looks like it will not be happening anytime soon.
Jones vs current heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou is the obvious money maker but getting the pair to agree on paydays would be the challenge. Miocic would not be as big of a draw as Ngannou but the fight would still sell very well on its own. Unfortunately it looks like the man considered to be the greatest heavyweight in UFC history might never return. Miocic not fighting again would be a loss to the UFC and we the fans but we usually do not get what we want.
Someone who would not be surprised at all if Stipe was done is MMA personality Ariel Helwani. His theory is that Jones vs Miocic wasn’t ever a likelihood and that the UFC wasn’t as interested in it as we thought.
I think once they didn’t really come correct with an offer and that’s really what happened here. It was like a ‘Hey, you want to fight him, here’s the amount, take it or leave it.’ And (Stipe Miocic) was like “uh” and then they just moved on.
So now I think they’re gonna try to make the fight against Ngannou in March, and if they do that, who is Stipe going to fight? Is he going to be motivated to fight for way less money to fight a Ciryl Gane or Curtis Blaydes? I can’t see it happening. So wouldn’t shock me if we never see him again. Could he come back? Sure. Next week, great! But wouldn’t shock me if we never see him again.
If Miocic is done he has had an amazing career that he can truly be proud of.