According to Chris Weidman, former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight champion, Stipe Miocic, has been bulking up in his time away from the Octagon.
With former Light Heavyweight kingpin, Jon Jones’s, eventual move up in weight leaving the mixed martial arts (MMA) world vexed with anticipation, speculation of his first opponent has boiled down to Miocic or current champion, Francis Ngannou. Having not been seen since his loss to Ngannou, where he dropped the title in March 2021 (watch highlights), Miocic has apparently also packed on the mass like Jones (see his transformation here).
“I see Jon Jones really working to gain size and Stipe was smaller,” Weidman told The Schmo. “I’ve trained with Stipe, he’s one of my boys, I was hanging out with him last night. Bro, he got big and he’s been doing it quietly. He’s like a solid 250 right now. Solid, 250, and whenever he decides to come back, he’s a problem. I don’t think Jon Jones wants that fight. If he thinks he’s gonna be going against a 225-pound Stipe, he’s wrong. He’s got a big strong boy that won’t stop coming forward and believes in himself and very well-rounded. He’s a different beast right now, I’m telling you.”
Like Miocic, Weidman is also a former UFC titleholder who hasn’t been seen in more than one year. However, the reasons for each of their layoffs are quite different as Weidman has been recovering from a nasty broken leg suffered in his rematch against Uriah Hall at UFC 261 in April 2021 (watch highlights).
Considered one of the greatest Heavyweights of all time, if not the greatest, three of Miocic’s four career defeats came against former or future champions. Coincidentally, he also holds wins over all three (Ngannou, Daniel Cormier, and Junior dos Santos) — the exception being the Netherlands’ Stefan Struve.