Stipe Miocic is nowhere to be seen in the heavyweight title picture even as Francis Ngannou prepares for his first title defense. According to former UFC fighter Chael Sonnen, Miocic is the rightful number one heavyweight contender.
Chael Sonnen believes it is time for the former heavyweight king to claim his deserved position on the UFC's heavyweight ladder. Regarding the current state of the division, Sonnen recently said on his podcast:
"Stipe Miocic has the matter. Stipe is happy being quiet sitting in the corner. I disagree with that. I think Stipe needs to come out and remind people, 'I have already beaten Francis.' He needs to remind people, 'I defended that belt more times than anybody.' He needs to remind people, 'I'm the true number one contender.' Look, what's gonna happen at heavyweight appears to be wide open. I think that Curtis Blaydes has been overlooked and maybe even has a run of bad luck. I think we have got some real... (Chris) Daukaus comes to mind. I think we have got some up and comers that don't have the name recognition yet. I would not ignore Stipe. I think he is rightful."
Watch Chael Sonnen discuss the UFC's heavyweight division:
Stipe Miocic lost his heavyweight title against Francis Ngannou at the UFC 260 headliner in March. However, the current logjam in the heavyweight division meant Miocic wasn't getting an immediate rematch.
There wasn't much noise from Stipe Miocic even as the UFC crowned a new interim heavyweight champion in Ciryl Gane. Gane is now scheduled to challenge Francis Ngannou for the heavyweight title at UFC 270 in January 2022.
Stipe Miocic not too bothered about being sidelined
Stipe Miocic was not happy about being deprived of an automatic rematch against Francis Ngannou. To further his troubles, the UFC booked an interim title fight between Ciryl Gane and Derrick Lewis, completely sidelining Miocic.
However, Stipe Miocic doesn't seem very perturbed about being sidelined from the title picture. The former UFC champion recently told MMA Fighting:
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"It happens all the time. I mean, it’s pretty much my (entire career). That’s fine with me. Maybe because I’m too nice. I don’t know. Maybe it’s because I don’t talk sh*t. I don’t know if I talk enough smack or I’m not a trash-talker, I don’t know. Who knows?”