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Jamahal Hill doesn’t feel he gets the respect he deserves.
“Sweet Dreams” rose to UFC gold violently, stopping three opponents via brutal first-round knockout to break into the title picture. When Jan Blachowicz vs. Magomed Ankalaev unexpectedly went to a draw and no vacant belt was awarded, Hill vs. Glover Teixeira was suddenly elevated to a title fight. Hill capitalized viciously, pummeling Teixeira into retirement.
It was a strange road to the title, and unfortunately, Hill’s reign didn’t last long. He tore his Achilles tendon over summer, subsequently vacating the Light Heavyweight belt like Jiri Prochazka before him. Alex Pereira just captured that crown last weekend by knocking out “BJP,” and now a Hill vs. “Poatan” title fight feels imminent. Whenever it’s booked, Hill is not only promising a knockout, but he intends to rub it in the faces of all the doubters too!
“Mark my words when I say this,” Hill said on his YouTube channel (via MMAFighting). “I do not plan on taking him down, I do not plan on wrestling him. I plan on going in there and where y’all think he’s just this otherworldy guy because he did kickboxing and I didn’t do kickboxing — this is a completely different sport. I been doing MMA for years. I been bred in MMA. And whenever I do fight him, standing, I will knock him out, and when I do, I’m going to rub it in every single one of y’all’s face.
“I won’t rub it in Alex’s face, Alex is a friend, but every single one of y’all that has talked, and disrespected. Regardless of anything, I’m better at my job, I am certified one of the top 15 in the world in my job in my weight class. As far as my credentials and in my lane, I’m one of the top one or two in the world. I’m truly the best. That’s why I say I’m the king.”
The exact timeline of Hill’s return is unclear. Given that Pereira called out Israel Adesanya for an MMA trilogy — and fifth fight overall — after his latest title win, “Stylebender” could certainly disrupt Hill’s plans and skip him. It would be a huge money fight, so there’s little doubt that UFC would sign off on another Adesanya title shot at 205-pounds.
Fortunately for Hill, he texted Adesanya himself, who confirmed that he’s still moved on from the match up. If Adesanya isn’t interested, Hill is almost certainly next.
“For anybody worried about ‘Izzy’ and all this and all that, he might jump the line, ‘Izzy’ already messaged me,” Hill said. “He messaged me the same night that it happened and he told me, ‘He’s all yours.’ Yeah, all mine. Alex is nobody’s. It’s right here, bro. There is nobody else. It’s just me. There is no other, interference is nothing. I’m the only thing that you have to worry about.”
It’s an expensive time to be a fight fan.
Ticket prices for #UFC297 (before fees in CAD, $1.00 USD = $1.37 CAD) according to current pre-sale:
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) November 15, 2023
This is a strange move from One Championship. Obviously Christian Lee’s absence is completely understandable for whatever length of time he deems appropriate, but isn’t this a case where an interim belt makes sense?
ONE Championship has removed its lightweight MMA rankings from its official website.
Here’s how it used to look.
Christian Lee’s return date is still uncertain, and there appears to be no sign of an interim belt. pic.twitter.com/ZcD0laF55x
— Nicolas Atkin (@NicoSCMP) November 15, 2023
I am amused by how well this works.
Given my 14-year commitment to martial arts and all the thousands of words written, I would consider myself a martial arts nerd, but … this is a whole different level of weird MMA nerd behavior.
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Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.