Tom Aspinall isn’t content with sitting on the sidelines too much longer.
The Briton, who earned the UFC’s interim heavyweight title with a 69-second win over Sergei Pavlovich in New York in November, is unsure of what his next move will be, with the overall heavyweight title apparently in stasis while champion Jon Jones recovers from a pectoral injury.
Upon his return Jones, who has never been legitimately defeated in the cage, is expected to fight Stipe Miocic; a fight that was initially supposed to take place on the same November card Aspinall would win his own iteration of UFC gold at. Aspinall has since faced calls to defend his interim crown while he waits for Jones and Miocic to settle their business — but the Englishman has again reiterated his belief that he should be the next man up once Jones make his comeback.
Stipe is one of my favourites. Loads of respect to him his Résumé is far superior to mine rn. That being said the UFC has never been about this. It’s about who’s the best right now, and I believe that’s me and it’s only right I get to prove it #freeaspinall
— Tom Aspinall (@AspinallMMA) January 4, 2024
“Surely if you’re interim champ, your next fight should be to fight for undisputed? Come on,” Aspinall wrote on X (formerly Twitter) on Thursday. “Stipe is one of my favourites. Loads of respect to him, his Résumé is far superior to mine [right now]. That being said, the UFC has never been about this. It’s about who’s the best right now, and I believe that’s me and it’s only right I get to prove it.”
He added the hashtag: #FreeAspinall.
“Since stipe last won a fight (Aug ‘20), I have blown my knee out, went thru the rehab process and had a year off, also had 7 UFC fights, including 4 wins vs top 10 ranked opponents and won the interim title on 2 weeks notice,” Aspinall added. “Absolutely, Stipe has a great Resume and is a legend in his own right. So has Tony [Ferguson]. Maybe we should give him a shot at the undisputed title next too?”
Miocic, correctly regarded as one of the finest heavyweight fighters in history, has not registered a win in the cage since August 2020.