Luke Rockhold har under lång tid kämpat i mellanviktsklassen både i Strikeforce och UFC. Den forne mellanviktsmästaren är nu på väg till lätt tungvikt och kommer att gå sin första match mot Jan Blachowicz under UFC 239 i juli.
Rockhold blev tidigare även utmanad av Anthony Smith.
Under galan kommer även lätt-tungviktsmästaren Jon Jones att gå match mot Thiago Santos. Rockhold har under en tid haft sitt sikte inställt på Jones.
Rockhold känner att han kommer att göra mycket bättre ifrån sig när han inte behöver banta ner sig lika mycket och berättar här varför han kommer att kunna segra mot Jones.
Via ‘The MMA Hour’:
I’m happy about not cutting weight. I’m happy about eating. I’m happy about how it feels. I’ve never felt like this before, and it feels good.
It just got harder and harder [at 185 pounds], and depleting myself more and more as the years went on, and man, I just wasn’t recovering. I didn’t have the strength. You can kinda see it as I go along, it’s just a lack of not recovering and getting back to full strength. Even in training camp, I’d get down to a certain weight the last few years, and I would just, I’d feel weak and depleted. When I had a little extra girth, I was doing a lot better. I could handle just about anybody at any weight. And so now, actually lifting and eating right and not depriving myself, it’s a different world. I’m excited to get in there and show the world.
Obviously the extra muscle, it kinda keeps everything intact. And a lot of those injuries happen at the end of training camp, when I’m depleting myself and getting down to weight and your body fat gets low. Your body becomes brittle. So I’m far less injury prone [at 205 pounds] and I’m looking forward to getting f*cking swinging, swinging with weight and some muscle.
Obviously I’m not happy with how I’ve been about my career lately, and I’ve rethought things. and I’m coming, and this is the recipe, this is the answer. Light heavyweight and not compromising myself. When I let it go, I let it go, and I’ve never met a man in the gym that can outdo me. So I’m just going to go out there and let this thing happen at light heavyweight and you guys are going to see, it’s going to be fun.
Luke Rockhold will make his light heavyweight debut opposite Jan Blachowicz at UFC 239. He’s hoping this win will propel him in the direction of his desired fight with Jon Jones — a fight he’s confident he’ll win.
I don’t believe there’s a man in the world who can compete with me on the ground. I don’t believe Jon is that polished on the feet. I think he adjusts, I think he’s tactical. I think I have the skills to beat him there, I have the skills to beat him on the ground, and I think the wrestling is pretty much nullified, I don’t really think it plays much of a factor.
It takes a good performance. It’s all about the performance of what we do and how you do it, so let’s just wait and see. Check me out July 6th [against Blachowicz], I’m going to go put this man away and then we can talk, then we can talk about what’s up.
Rockhold har i sina senaste 3 matcher förlorat 2 av dem, där han knockades första ronden av Michael Bisping under UFC 199 och han mötte sedan David Branch under Fight Night 116 där han segrade via TKO i andra ronden. Senast förlorade Rockhold mot Yoel Romero via knockout i tredje ronden under UFC 221.