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Too-small Stipe Miocic plans to bulk up for Francis Ngannou rubber match — ‘20 pounds will help’

The former champ rolls in around the 1:30:07 mark.

Just like he did with longtime rival Daniel Cormier, former UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic is expected to complete another championship trilogy when he makes his return to battle Francis Ngannou at some point in late 2021, or perhaps early 2022.

The full-time firefighter captured a lopsided unanimous decision victory over “The Predator” when they first went to war at UFC 220, but then found himself looking up at the lights in their UFC 260 rematch, which happened just last month in Las Vegas.

Expect a few changes for their third and final dance.

“I want to get back what’s mine,” Miocic told The Pat McAfee Show (transcribed by Cole Shelton). “I’m trying to get to 250. I just made 230 last time, not because I tried, but because of training. I’m really going to stick to trying to add some weight and mass. I felt good, but 20 pounds will help, I will feel a lot stronger. He’s a big dude.”

Miocic weighed nearly 30 pounds less than Ngannou for UFC 260.

Ngannou, 34, improved to 16-3 with 12 knockouts and is expected to rematch Derrick Lewis in early summer. Depending on how that fight plays out, “The Predator” — who insists on fighting more frequently — could end up facing the winner of this fight.

As for Miocic (20-4), who turns 39 in August, his only two losses over the last six years have come against Ngannou and Cormier, a record of 8-2 with six knockouts, which is why the ex-champ remains ranked No. 1 in the division.

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