If ever there’s the perfect model of a fighter’s fighter, it must look a lot like Chris Weidman. The current UFC MW champion has routinely been willing to take the deepest path through the mud in the sake of fighting glory. And now, with a bevy of potential MW challengers on the horizon, he’s setting his sights on a bigger, and potentially more dangerous prize: former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
Weidman recently spoke to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour and talked about his desire to eventually move up to the light heavyweight division:
“I feel like there’s a plan for me and I know this is a big fight for me. I’m going to retire undefeated and I will be named the greatest of all time. At some point, I don’t know when it’s going to happen… But in order to do that, I’m going to go up to 205 and beat whoever everybody thinks is the best up there. That is gonna happen. I’m really excited for that, but first I have to beat everybody at 185. I think Luke is a great fight to have.”
“I could get up, if I wanted to, if I eat a little bit, lift a little bit, maybe get up to 225 pretty easy. Not easy, but I could get up there.”
When Jon Jones’ name was thrown in as a potential candidate, Weidman sounded as though a “superfight” with the 205 lb champion-in-exile has been on his mind for a while (transcription via MMAFighting):
“I know for a fact, I’m not leaving this sport without fighting Jon. Unless he’s not coming back at all. But if he’s there, and I’m here, people are going to want to see it happen. And I want to see it happen.”
“That’s nothing against Jon. It’s just because I’m a competitor. I want to fight the best possible people. I want to have the biggest challenges in front of me and conquer them.”
“He’s an amazing athlete and he’s accomplished so much. So I hope he gets his stuff together and he comes back.”
Of course, the “stuff” Jones needs to “get together” are felony charges stemming from a hit and run case back in April of this year. At the moment, Jones is serving a conduct suspension from the UFC with his criminal case still waiting in the court system. So, there are a lot of potential hangups in the way of Jones making his return to the cage.
In the meantime, Weidman is set to take on Luke Rockhold at UFC 194, headlined by Jose Aldo vs. Conor McGregor for the unified featherweight title. Weidman talked about his fight with Rockhold, being the co-main again, Anderson Silva’s NAC hearing, USADA drug testing, and much more, so check the whole thing out.
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