Michael Bisping believes Tom Aspinall would make quick work of reigning UFC heavyweight champion Jon Jones in a potential title tilt.
Aspinall scored a highlight-reel-worthy 73-second knockout of Marcin Tybura in his return to the Octagon on Saturday night, sending the raucous crowd inside the iconic O2 Arena home with something to celebrate. With six wins under the UFC banner and a 100% finish rate, it’s finally time to start taking the UK native seriously as a legit title contender. In fact, Aspinall’s mate and countryman, Michael Bisping, believes that he will undoubtedly become the UFC’s heavyweight world champion sooner rather than later.
“Tom Aspinall was utterly fantastic,” Bisping said during an interview with Sky Sports. That was one of the best performances I’ve ever seen from a heavyweight. Marcin Tybura, the guy that he beat, is no walk in the park. He’s won seven of his last eight against world-class opposition and Tom just blew threw him like he was nothing. And I do 100% believe he will be the champion. In fact, I know he will be the champion, barring any freak injury or something terrible… Luck happens, you know. He will be the champion of the world.”
WELCOME BACK TOM ASPINALL https://t.co/VHwEu24QTo
— Talkin Hands (@TalkinHands101) July 22, 2023
Standing in Aspinall’s way of becoming the UFC heavyweight champion is the man many consider to be the greatest mixed martial artist to ever strap on the four-ounce gloves, Jon ‘Bones’ Jones. However, despite Jones’ illustrious career and unmatched record, Bisping does not see the heavyweight champ lasting long in a potential clash with the budding UK superstar.
“Jon Jones is the heavyweight champion. He’s an incredible fighter,” Bisping said. “He’s one of the greatest of all time. I don’t think he can hold a candle to Tom. I think Tom will do the same thing to Jon Jones as what he did to Marcin Tybura. I don’t think there’s anyone that can stop Tom Aspinall. He’s that good. He’s that switched on and he’s a great guy as well.”
That’s an undeniably bold statement by Bisping. And while some of it can be dismissed as bias considering both Aspinall and ‘The Count’ are natives of England, you can’t deny that Aspinall has looked absolutely stellar throughout his UFC career thus far, and is truly ready for the next level of competition.
“Maybe I’m biased. Maybe he’s my mate,” Bisping added. “Maybe I’m just supporting the English. Call it what you will, but I don’t think I’m looking through rose-colored spectacles. I truly believe in everything that I’m saying and I stand by it.”
While Jones vs. Aspinall sounds like an incredible fight, many suspect that it’s a contest we will never see. The consensus seems to believe ‘Bones’ will walk away from the sport following his heavyweight title showdown with Stipe Miocic at UFC 295 in November. Bisping suggested that if Jon Jones truly wants to be the undisputed GOAT of MMA, he needs to take out both the legend and the top prospect before calling it a career.
“If [Jones] walks away, there will always be talk of, ‘Oh, he didn’t want to fight Tom.’ You should fight the top prospect. Win the belt, beat the GOAT, and then take on the top prospect. And what else is there to do? If he can pull that off, Jon Jones without question would be the greatest of all time. I think I’m stating my case pretty strongly here. C’mon Jon, lets go,” Bisping said whilst looking directly into the camera.
“I’ll see him soon”
Tom Aspinall reacts to Jon Jones knowing who he is 👀
— Combat Sports UK (@CombatSportsUK) July 22, 2023
Tom Aspinall Ready to Go Through Ciryl Gane to Get His Shot
Before Tom Aspinall can start gearing up for his dream fight with Jon Jones, he’ll likely need one more big win under his belt. He hopes to get exactly that by fighting the winner of September’s clash between former interim heavyweight titleholder Ciryl Gane, and a man he has already beaten once before, Sergei Spivac.
“Ciryl Gane and Tom are kind of a new breed of heavyweight. When you look at heavyweight fighters, some people might… You know, a little soft around the midsection. Big guys. Tough guys. Strong guys. Great athletes, but sometimes they can be kind of sluggish. These guys are technicians. These guys are skilled. They are athletes. A-star athletes. They could have done any sport they wanted.
“Ciryl Gane vs. Tom Aspinall would be incredible, but I just said, Tom can wrestle. Tom’s got jiu-jitsu, and look at what Jon Jones did to Ciryl. And I love Ciryl, by the way. He’s a good friend of mine. I worked with him on a movie earlier this year, so I’m not talking bad about the guy. I’m a big fan, but styles make fights and I think Tom with the grappling would have a pretty easy day.”
Aspinall revealed in his UFC London post-fight interview that he would make the trip to Paris to witness Gane vs. Spivac in person, potentially setting the stage for a heavyweight title eliminator with the winner in late 2023/early 2024.