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Exclusive: UFC fighter Paul Craig claims current LHW roster poses much harder challenge than what Jon Jones was facing

Paul Craig (far left), Glover Teixeira (left), Jiri Prochazka (right), Jon Jones (far right)
(L-R) Paul Craig, Glover Teixeira, Jiri Prochazka, Jon Jones

UFC light heavyweight contender Paul Craig believes former champ Jon Jones would struggle against the current crop of talent in the 205lbs division.

'Bones' vacated the light heavyweight strap in 2020 with the aim of moving up to heavyweight as well as forcing a new contract with the UFC. In the nearly three years since he left the division, stars such as Glover Teixeira, Jan Blachowicz and Jiri Prochazka have become champs.

The division has also seen some rising stars make their way through the rankings, including Magomed Ankalaev, Aleksandar Rakic and Jamahal Hill, with Hill facing off against Teixeira for the vacant 205lbs title at UFC 283 this weekend.

Also on the weekend's card is Paul Craig, who recently sat down for an exclusive with Sportskeeda MMA's Andrew Whitelaw. When asked about his division, the Scotsman stated that even the former "king" Jon Jones would struggle against some of the talent available:

"I think Prochazka is definitely a breath of fresh air in this division. It's been a wee bit toxic since when the king left. The king being Jon Jones, when he abdicated the throne and left it to everybody else to fight over... It's still kind of topsy turvy but I believe in the next 6-8 months we're going to see some dominant performances... not quite like Jon Jones did back in the day but I believe the skillset and the fighters in the top 10 are now much harder than what Jones was going up against."

Check out the full interview with Paul Craig here:

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Paul Craig talks being the only one to defeat title challenger Jamahal Hill

In the same interview with Sportskeeda MMA, Paul Craig also discussed the victory he holds over title contender Jamahal Hill.

Craig and Hill met in the octagon at UFC 263 back in 2021. The Scotsman was undefeated in his previous four fights whereas Hill had yet to taste defeat in his professional career.

'Bearjew' would put on one of the best performances of his career against Hill as he TKO'd the rising star in the first round with a mix of elbows and punches that earned him a Performance of the Night bonus. As of now, it remains the only loss of Jamahal Hill's career.

Paul Craig is also fighting this weekend & here is a reminder of what he did to one the LHW challengers in the main event πŸ™πŸΌ https://t.co/yKnfPxhIxT

Craig stated that the win he holds over the American helps cement his mindset that he's a UFC champion in waiting:

"You like to compare yourself with everybody else in this sport... Knowing that I've got a victory over the young buck in the division, knowing he's got crazy knockout power... For me, I know there's an opportunity for me if Jamahal Hill get's that title that we could run it back."

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Edited by Aziel Karthak
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