The greatest of all time in most of the UFC’s weight classes have all received immediate rematches, regardless of the manner in which they lost, except Stipe Miocic. Coming off his knockout loss to Francis Ngannou he has just been totally cast aside and he isn’t happy about it.
Stipe Miocic Unhappy About Current Situation in UFC
G.O.A.T’s like Anderson Silva, B.J. Penn, Conor McGregor, and Dominick Cruz all received title rematches or rematches after a loss immediately but yet Stipe Miocic is getting the Jose Aldo treatment of getting tossed away like yesterday’s newspaper.
Stipe Miocic has seemingly fallen to number four in the UFC rankings behind champion Francis Ngannou, Cyril Gane, and Derrick Lewis. Gane and Lewis have a date with each other on August 7th at UFC 265 for the interim heavyweight belt while Ngannou takes some time off after winning the belt.
Nolan King of MMAJunkie pointed out on Twitter how no champion has ever just fallen off the map as Miocic has.
The man's got a point. It's not often a divisional GOAT gets brushed aside without a single thought of a rematch – and ends up like third (maybe fourth) in line. https://t.co/uCnFhm6i9F
— Nolan King (@mma_kings) July 26, 2021
Miocic has voiced his opinion this week about how he has noticed that he has been tossed to the side, even going as far as to comment on an Instagram post by the One Championship account where CEO Chatri Sityodtong asked “who should I sign?”.
Is that him showing interest in One? Or is it him showing the UFC he isn’t afraid to leave and has options because he does? He has had issues in the past with the company from a pay standpoint and everyone knows how much Dana White loves that.
One thing that Stipe Miocic does have in his back pocket, a trump card so to speak, is that he is one of the two men, the other being Derrick Lewis, who has a win over the current champ. When he beat Ngannou in Boston in 2018 and since then Ngannou has been reincarnated into the predator monster we all see today.
That win gives Miocic options, exploring those options may be in his best interest.
Option One: Fight His Way Into the Title Picture
With top-ranked heavyweights such as Derrick Lewis and Cyril Gane being tied up with each other and Ngannou sitting out for the time being the questions asks, what heavyweights are left for the Miocic?
Alexander Volkov makes sense as Volkov is coming off a decision loss to Gane and a win over Miocic would be the biggest of his career. For Miocic though, Volkov would be another name on the record books that would make looking back on his career more fruitfully that he took a loss and went and got a win against another top-ranked heavyweight in the meantime.
Other names that may hold some weight for Stipe Miocic in terms of building a legacy as well as going for the title again would include Jairzinho Rozenstruik and Augusto Sakai. Both men just fought each other with Rozenstruik getting the win over Sakai but I love both fights for Miocic from a standup point of view to show his chin is still there as well as showing he can bounce back and not be hesitant to stand with them.
Option Two: Leave the UFC
Maybe leaving the UFC makes sense, former heavyweight G.O.A.T Fedor Emelianenko build his legacy in Pride Fighting Championships before jumping to promotions Affliction, Strikeforce, and now currently with Bellator.
Going to an organization like One Championship or Bellator I honestly believe makes a ton of sense for both parties in either case. One Championship has a new heavyweight champion who isn’t afraid of cutting a good promo in Arjan Bhullar, a win for either man would be monumental because it would either solidify Bhullar or give Stipe Miocic another belt to add to the trophy case.
As for Bellator, their heavyweight division has been an absolutely trainwreck ever since Cole Konrad, a major throwback of a name, retired and began a career as a commodities broker. Since 2010 Bellator has had just eight heavyweight title bouts whereas Miocic has proven to be an active champion and fighter in general. Miocic would be a needed breathe, nope, an oxygen tank for the division in Bellator.
Option Three: Crossover to Boxing
Stipe Miocic knows the game is all about one thing, money.
No other combat sport has proven to generate more money than boxing and with all the crazy fights that have been made between boxers both young and old, you would imagine Miocic may have some worth in it all.
Pairing Miocic with someone like Luis Ortiz or a Joseph Parker would absolutely sell on pay-per-view in the crossover market between boxing and MMA. I know what you are thinking, why throw him in with those top-ranked boxers? Miocic was a golden gloves champion before entering the UFC and has shown since then that he has skilled boxing technique and has stopping power in his hands.
While this may be the most unrealistic of the three options it is fun to think about nonetheless, bottom line is though that Miocic has options and him taking his time to make the right one will be crucial.