The No. 6 ranked UFC heavyweight wants his shot at former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. “Bones” vacated the belt in August and announced his intentions to move up to heavyweight, and Alistair Overeem would like the chance to welcome him into the division.
Overeem, who has trained with Jones in that past at the Jackson Wink MMA Academy in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is a staple in the UFC heavyweight division and a win over Bones would be a massive feather in his cap and could catapult him into the title shot conversation. During a recent press conference to promote his fight with Augusto Sakai on Saturday, “The Demolition Man” was asked about potentially fighting Jones.
He answered, “Yes, I would do it. I think it’s a great fight and I would feel honored.”
“I think he’s a great addition to the heavyweight division,” The Demolition Man continued.
“I’m actually excited.It’s fresh blood. I’ve trained with him. He’s very capable. He’s tough, he’s good, so I’m excited about that development.”
Since Jones announced his move up to heavyweight, there has been speculation that Bones could cut the line and receive an immediate title shot. And Overeem is not too concerned about it.
“I’m not too worried about that,” Overeem said. “[I’m] just focused on the task at hand, and with that being said, I just need to focus on winning my fights, and then I believe I will get what I want.”
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Overeem Is Set to Fight Surging August Sakai on September 5
Overeem (46-18 MMA) is looking to continue toward a heavyweight title shot by defeating a rising contender, No. 9 ranked August Sakai, on Saturday night during UFC Fight Night 176. The Demolition Man is 3-1 in his last four bouts, including a second-round TKO victory in his last fight against Walt Harris in May.
Sakai (15-1-1 MMA) is currently undefeated inside the Octagon. Since making his UFC debut in September 2018, the Brazilian has rattled off four straight victories, including a split decision win over Andrei Arlovski.
Whoever gets their hand raised at the UFC Apex Center on September 5 will take another step up the heavyweight ladder. At 40 years old and losses to top fighters including current heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic and No. 1 ranked Francis Ngannou, defeating a young rising contender like Sakai is crucial for Overeem if he hopes to continue on the path toward another shot at the belt.
Bones Wants to Fight Miocic Next for the Heavyweight Belt
If it were up to Jones, he would skip the line at heavyweight and get the next title shot against Miocic. Miocic and Ngannou have been linked together for the next divisional championship fight, however Bones doesn’t think that’s the route the UFC should take.
Miocic and Ngannou fought back in 2018 and Miocic dominated Ngannou for five rounds, earning a unanimous decision. To Bones, he doesn’t see much of an upside for Miocic fighting Ngannou again.
On August 31, Bones tweeted, “Stipe doesn’t want to fight Francis again because the first fight really wasn’t close.” Jones continued, “Looking at it from Stipe’s point of view, fighting Francis again is definitely more of a lose situation than a win.”
Jones tweeted, “Stipe asked for a new challenge, why not fight the light heavyweight goat? Besides we’re way closer in size. What’s more exciting than that?”
Bones said that by the time Miocic heals from his fight with Daniel Cormier on August 15, he should be ready for his heavyweight debut.
The former light heavyweight king wrote, “Stipe versus Francis is high risk low reward. Stipe versus myself actually makes a lot of sense for both of us. Now you actually have a super fight. Stipe loses the fight is gone.”