Luke Rockhold may end up facing eighth-ranked Ultimate Fighting Championship middleweight Sean Strickland in his long-awaited return to the Octagon. However, when the fight was offered to him in the past, the former UFC champion wasn't too keen on the idea.
Headlines were made yesterday when TSN reported that the promotion offered Rockhold a bout with UFC Vegas 33 main event winner Strickland. The news was the first time fans had heard about the booking, however, the bout was offered to the 36-year-old Rockhold previously, and he wasn't a fan of the suggestion back then, as he told MMA podcast ">Submission Radio.
Luke Rockhold on not giving 'two f*cks' about idea of fight with Strickland months ago
"I want something that's going to get me f*cking fired up, and it just keeps falling through. And they're like 'Sean Strickland', and I'm like, 'who the f*ck is Sean Strickland. What the f*ck you talking about'" Rockhold said. "That's going to make me want to come back? And I was like you better give me something better than that. Nothing came to be, and month after month; they gave me a couple of options, and those two options fell through [and] being a b*tch about every other option so here we go.
" ... They offered me, Sean, a while back and I wasn't interested because it wasn't the fight I wanted. It didn't make any sense, no one knew of him, and I didn't give two f*cks about him. Now it's like Dana's trying to piss me off with it. Obviously, he went out there, he beat Uriah Hall, he looked decent, and he took a ranking, so there's something to work with I guess now."
The one-time Strikeforce champion -- who has not competed inside the Octagon in over two years -- seems to be at his wit's end when it comes to finding a return matchup he likes. Strickland isn't the fight he wanted, but it looks like the fight he will get. Especially, since he believes UFC President Dana White is purposefully making the process of getting a suitable foe harder than it needs to be.
"I think Dana is trying to make it harder than it has to be really. Obviously, because of my outspokeness and different things," said Rockhold. "This kid Sean has been offered, so they're trying to do something. I haven't heard any dates or anything like that. That is something they're interested in. Yea, let's do it. He's not the most; he took a ranking, he did his thing but he doesn't help himself in any way shape, or form with his style and performance on mics."
Rockhold isn't a fan of Sean Strickland's media skills
One of those mic moments Rockhold is alluding to was during Stricklands post-victory Octagon interview. In his conversation with broadcast analyst Paul Felder, the 33-year-old said he'd, "probably be cooking meth in a trailer in prison" if not for his career in the UFC. It was an unusual way to show appreciation to his employer and fans of the sport, but that has become par for the course for "Tarzan's" media interactions. Rockhold is not a fan of it.
"What a fucking idiot," Rockhold said about Strickland's meth comments.
Rockhold is currently on a two-fight losing streak and has been knocked out in three of his last four Octagon outings.
Are you interested in a booking between the former two-promotion champion and the unusual Strickland?