UFC star Paddy Pimblett shared his thoughts on a potential fight between Tom Aspinall and UFC heavyweight champion Jon Jones.
This weekend marked another significant leap for UK MMA. Tom Aspinall secured a blistering first-round knockout against Sergei Pavlovich, making him the new interim UFC heavyweight champion and becoming only the third British champion in the UFC’s history. The Manchester native was about to go on a holiday with his family when a high-up from the UFC called him at four in the morning to tell him Jon Jones was out of his fight with Stipe Miocic at UFC 295. Much like the legendary Michael Bisping, Aspinall seized the opportunity with just 17 days’ notice and changed his life just like that.
The landscape of UK MMA is flourishing. With two reigning champions and a host of promising talents climbing the ranks—including the likes of Arnold Allen, Nathaniel Wood, Paul Craig, Paddy Pimblett, and Mohammad Mokaev—it’s evident that the sport is experiencing a surge in talent. For MMA enthusiasts in the UK, this is a thrilling era to be a part of.
Paddy Pimblett Praises Tom Aspinall’s Title Fight Performance
After Aspinall made quick work of Pavlovich, all the UK MMA stars were quick to sing his praises and congratulate him. The list includes one of the UFC’s most polarising fighters, Liverpool’s own, Paddy Pimblett.
In an interview with Sky Sports, Pimblett said that Aspinall “looked absolutely unbelievable” and that he “stepped up to the plate and made it”.
‘The Baddy’ continued to sing Aspinall’s praises.
“Two weeks notice to come in and knockout fighters like Pavlovich like that in a minute and 10 seconds, unbelievable”.
“I said Tom was going to win but I will be honest, I thought it was going to take a round for him to submit him… Tom is just too fast for these heavyweights. Heavyweights don’t move that fast, he was like a middleweight.”
Should Jon Jones vs Tom Aspinall Be Next?
Dana White has made it clear that even though Aspinall is the interim champion, the UFC still want to make Jones vs Miocic for the heavyweight title. However, many feel like after Aspinall’s performance on Saturday, he should be the one fighting Jones, not Miocic, who last fought in 2021, suffering a round-one knockout loss to Francis Ngannou.
Pimblett believes if anyone can beat Jones, it’s Aspinall.
“For me, Jon Jones is the GOAT but if anyone can give him a fight, it is Tom Aspinall. He has got the speed, he has got the jujitsu, he has got the power but I don’t think Jones will fight him.”
Paddy Pimblett Talks Openly About His Fight With Jared Gordon
The scouser will face off against UFC legend Tony Ferguson next month in Las Vegas, marking his return to the octagon since the injury he incurred during his controversial victory over Jared Gordon.
Pimblett had this to say to Sky Sports about his bout with Gordon.
“In this sport we only get judged on our last performance. It doesn’t matter that my first three UFC fights I got finishes in the first two rounds, people just judge me on my last performance. The amount of times I have been told I lost that fight, the people that matter scored differently, the judges.”
The 28-year-old goes on to talk about some of the hardships that come with being in the UFC spotlight.
“The past year has been quite hard, people have been giving me hell on socials and online and stuff like that. I have even been told to take my own life and stuff like that so it is tough but you get on with it. You have got to take the bad with the good, that is just the way it is. MMA fans are fickle. When I beat Tony Ferguson everyone will jump back on the bandwagon.”
So, what’s next for our Tom Aspinall? Jones? Miocic? Almeida? And will fight fans be straight back on ‘The Baddy’ hype train if he’s to beat ‘El Cucuy’ in December? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Credit to Sky Sports for the Quotes. Watch the full interview below
Featured image credits to Embed from Getty Images