Jay Hieron: UFC Return a Possibility, But I'm 'Definitely' Fighting in 2010

Contrary to published reports and the fighter's own Twitter account, Jay Hieron has not yet secured his release from Strikeforce.

The fighter recently told MMA Fighting that the two sides are still speaking, but he's looking forward, not backward.

"I jumped the gun. We're working on it," said Hieron, who was in Boston last weekend to help teammate Randy Couture finish preparations in facing James Toney at UFC 118. "Strikeforce is a good organization. I've had a good time fighting for them but I'm looking to the future. We haven't cut ties yet. We're working on a few things. But I'm in the gym every day and I'm definitely going to fight again in 2010."

Hieron first announced his departure from the San Jose, California-based promotion on Twitter on Aug. 21, writing, "I finally got my release from SF ... Y'all know what I'm about to do!"

The promotion is still in a contractual period where they have a right to match any offer presented to Hieron, who is currently entertaining various offers. Though he wouldn't name any prospective suitors, one possibility is the UFC. Hieron fought for the promotion twice, once in 2004, and once in 2005, losing both times.

Asked if a return to the octagon was a possibility, he said, "Definitely, I'd like to fight in the UFC or wherever. Wherever the chips fall, that's where I'm going to go."

The 34-year-old former IFL champion has won seven straight fights, including two in Strikeforce. His last fight, however, was back in January, when he earned a decision over Joe Riggs.

Hieron (19-4) was at one time expected to fight for the Strikeforce welterweight title, but the fight never materialized and Hieron's career with Strikeforce stalled.

"My whole career's been ups and downs but I take the good with the bad," he said. "Keep moving forward. Everytime you go through something in life, if you just lay down, you're never going to become anything. I'm still here. I've been training through all the drama and I'm still here.

"Everything's looking good right now," he continued. "I'm definitely going to fight in 2010. There's definitely offers out there, but there's a couple things I'm going to work out. Hopefully we'll be signed soon and fighting. I want to be the best in the world and going through all the stuff I've gone through has made me stronger."

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