Tom Aspinall believes he should be the real UFC heavyweight champion and that Jon Jones should be stripped of the title, but UFC CEO Dana White plans to re-book the bout between Jones and Stipe Miocic despite Aspinall’s impressive win and the MMA community’s lack of interest in the matchup.
Interim UFC heavyweight champion Tom Aspinall expressed his confusion over the fact that the interim label was not being removed. After knocking out Sergei Pavlovich in just 69 seconds in the co-main event of UFC 295, Aspinall won the interim belt due to an injury suffered by Jon Jones, which resulted in the cancellation of his first scheduled heavyweight title defense against Stipe Miocic. Aspinall believes that his impressive win merits him being recognized as the actual champion over Jones. He expressed his opinion to Michael Bisping on the former middleweight champ’s YouTube channel, stating, “I think Jon Jones should be stripped from the title, to be honest, because everyone else does when they get injured like that. I don’t see why he’s still got it, I don’t understand that. I should be the real champion right now.”
After UFC 295, UFC CEO Dana White indicated that the promotion’s plans for Jones remain unchanged despite Aspinall’s victory, and the current plan is to re-book the bout between Jones and Miocic. Aspinall, along with several others in the MMA community, is perplexed by the promotional interest in Jones vs. Miocic following UFC 295. Aspinall questioned, “It’s hard to say without sounding rude, but who [is asking] about Jon Jones and Stipe anymore? Why do we get this legacy fight? And they get to live by their own rules? What’s a legacy fight — a retirement fight for a title? I want to fight Stipe and then I want to fight Jon Jones.”
Aspinall expressed frustration with the situation, dismissing it as “rubbish” and calling for an end to the protection of Jones. He made it clear that he is ready to step up and take on Stipe, asserting, “I think all this other stuff is rubbish. Stop protecting him now, stop protecting your boy Jon Jones at the top. If he’s injured, get out of the way and I’ll fight Stipe.”