Jamahal Hill couldn’t possibly care less when it comes to who walks out of Madison Square Garden with his light heavyweight title.
On November 11, former champions collide as Jiri Prochazka and Alex Pereira are set to co-headline the UFC’s return to the world’s most famous arena, Madison Square Garden, and crown a new king of the 205-pound division. The matchup will come four months removed from when ex-champion Jamahall Hill was forced to vacate the title after suffering a ruptured Achilles.
A rather ironic twist to the story considering Hill’s opportunity to fight for the light heavyweight championship came only after Jiri Prochazka was forced to vacate it due to a severe shoulder injury months following his victory over Glover Teixeira in a Fight of the Year contender at UFC 275.
‘Sweet Dreams’ is not expected to return until 2024, meaning that for now, the light heavyweight division must move on without him. Sadly, Hill was never once given the opportunity to defend following his own title clash with Teixeira.
As a result, many fans online were quick to suggest that Hill’s title run was forgettable, or even illegitimate.
“A lot of people I’ve seen say ‘Ah, you weren’t really the champion…You only got this opportunity because Jiří vacated the belt, because he was injured.’” Hill said in a video on his YouTube channel. “Yeah, and that was the case in which I got my opportunity. And whenever I got my opportunity against the same opponent that Jiří himself was going [to fight again] to basically put the stamp of legitimacy on his title reign.”
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) September 21, 2023
Jamahal Hill Discusses What Separates Him From Jiri Prochazka
While Jamahal Hill and Jiri Prochazka’s title reigns began and ended in an eerily similar fashion, ‘Sweet Dreams’ believes that his performance over Glover Teixeira was far greater than that of Prochazka’s, making Hill the undisputed king of the division.
“He got the submission [against Teixeira] but he got his a** whooped for the good majority of that fight. I can’t look at somebody as a ‘king’ who’s got their a** whooped on some of the occasions he’s had,” Hill continued.
“He’s lost some rounds very, very significantly in the past. We’ve seen him rocked, we’ve seen him hurt. You’ve never seen me rocked, you’ve never seen me hurt. You’ve never seen me wobbled, you’ve never seen me just dominated. So I am the king. Until I come back and I’m given my proper opportunity to stand on that and defend what’s mine, I look at myself as the king.”
A timetable for Hill’s return to the Octagon is still up in the air, but ‘Sweet Dreams’ has every intention of challenging the winner between Jiri Prochazka and Alex Pereira in hopes of reclaiming the title that he still believes to be rightfully his.
Watch the full video below: