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Stipe Miocic: ‘I’m going to do what I want’ to Jon Jones at UFC 295

UFC Fight Night: Magny v Griffin Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

For UFC heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic, the key to unlocking the puzzle that is current titleholder Jon Jones is being himself.

That means all of that reach, leg kicks, spinning attacks and other unpredictable things that make Jones the champ – and a frequent pick for MMA G.O.A.T. – are secondary to the plan he has to win back the belt.

“I’m not going to let him dictate what he wants to do,” Miocic said on the “Believe You Me” video podcast with Anthony Smith and Michael Bisping. “I’m going to dictate what I want to do. I’m going to do what I want. The minute I let him stop doing what I want, I’ve lost the fight. But if I do what I want, my chances are a lot better of winning than losing.”

Asked about the well-known threats Jones presents, Miocic said the champ is very good at “off the wall stuff that it works.”

“I’m not like that,” he added. “You could say I’m a basic b**** – I’m more like a one-two, one-two kick. I’m simple. He’s very dangerous from everywhere. He does things you wouldn’t expect, so I need to prepare for everything.”

When the two meet at UFC 295 on Nov. 11 at Madison Square Garden, Miocic said he’ll be between 245 and 250 pounds, more than ready to grapple the new bulk Jones added to his frame since moving up from the light heavyweight division. Critics have questioned whether Miocic’s attention was properly focused by going from part-time to full-time as a firefighter paramedic, but the ex-champ said nothing has changed.

“I’m doing everything I’m supposed to,” he said. “I haven’t changed anything I’ve done. I can still work out at the station. It’s not like every day is a sparring day, or a pad day – it’s conditioning, lifting. There’s recovery days. I don’t understand people.”

If Miocic wants to educate MMA fans on anything, it’s that fights like these are often hard to make. Several months passed between Jones calling him out after winning the heavyweight belt, and it appeared on several occasions that the matchup wouldn’t come to fruition. Miocic is tight-lipped about the behind-the-scenes of negotiations, but he indicated it was not an easy booking. At one point, he said he was forced to delay the bout due to his hectic family schedule.

“People don’t understand, there’s a lot more to it than me and a guy trying to fight,” he said. “UFC always has a thing they need to get to, and sometimes, it just didn’t work out for them. It’s a business, I get it.”

Jones attempts the first defense of the heavyweight belt he captured in March with a quick win over ex-interim champ Ciryl Gane. The dominant showing earned “Bones” the 2023 ESPY for Best MMA fighter, an honor Miocic isn’t too impressed with.

“That’s good for him,” he said. “Unfortunately for him, a lot’s going to change.”

Asked to predict the fight, Miocic said Jones won’t be able to control the fight by wrestling him to the canvas.

“I’m walking out with the belt wrapped around my waist – and new, there’s no question about that,” he said. “I’m going to beat him in every aspect of the game. I’m going for the finish.”

Below is Miocic’s full interview.

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