UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic was among the guests on the tremendous 100th Submission Radio podcast.
Former WWE champion Phil ‘CM Punk’ Brooks received some jeers for showing less than UFC-level skills in his losing performance vs. Mickey Gall at UFC 203. However, Miocic has an alternate perspective. The champion received points on the pay per view, and CM Punk brought in a lot of new fans. That translates into more money for the sport generally, and for Miocic specifically, so he did not begrudge Brooks his $500,000 payday.
“This is the world we live in. People want to see him fight. I mean, He should get compensated, it’s just like anything you do. Listen man, he brought a lot of pay-per-view sales, helped me out a lot,” said Miocic, laughing. “So listen, I give him a lot of credit for going out there and doing what he did, man. I praise him for that, man. It wasn’t his night, but listen, he trained and he gave it all he’s got. Unfortunately … but he still went out there.”
Miocic spoke to CM Punk after the loss.
“I just told him ‘keep your head up, man.’ It’s not how hard you get knocked down, it’s how you get up,” said Miocic. “He’s a great dude, he’s a real good dude. I give him all the credit in the world for training like that and going in there and doing his first fight in the UFC just like that against a tough dude like that.”
Miocic was asked too about his own fight at UFC 203, and if he thought he would finish Overeem in the first.
“No, man,” said the champ, ever honest. “Listen, when I got him down I was like, I gotta finish this round, I got him right where I want him and I was hitting him with shots too. I was like, I just gotta get one in there and luckily I did. I got that one I needed in there and I swung and kind of hit him with the right hand and it worked out well.”
Miocic has yet to earn fan appreciation equal to his baddest man on the planet status, and was asked if he thought the win over ‘Reem would earn him the respect he deserves.
“I’m not worried about it, honestly,” he replied. “Listen, they can keep doubting me, they can keep me as the underdog, I’m gonna keep proving you wrong. I like shutting people up. … I know I can be one of those guys that can keep the belt for a long time and I’m going to.”
There was an awkward episode after the UFC 203 main event when am apparently still dazed Overeem told color commentator Joe Rogan that the referee missed Miocic tapping. Rogan and the crew went through two angles looking for the missed tap, and found nothing. Afterwards, Rogan asked that fighters who had been knocked out not be subject to a post-fight interview, something that only happens with huge fights anyway.
“Listen, I’ve been there too,” said Miocic. “When I fought Struve I was a little messed up in the head too and I understand where he’s coming from with that. I just thought [in that situation] you don’t know what you’re doing, you don’t know what you’re saying.”
Moicic said that Overeem’s claim did not ruin the moment of victory.
“Nah man, I understand,” he said. “Like I said, I’ve been in that situation before and you just don’t know what you’re saying. You kind of don’t remember stuff that’s going on and it’s a tough situation. It is what it is. It just sucks and it’s just bad timing I guess.”
Miocic also discussed what’s next, and whether he prefers to build his heavyweight legacy fighting Cain Velasquez, or via a super fight with Jon Jones.
“It doesn’t bother me, honestly,” said Miocic, laughing. “Whoever you want me to fight, I’ll fight. Listen, I’m the champ and I’m not going to pick and choose who I fight. Whoever they want me to fight, I’m going to fight. So I really don’t care.”
Miocic was asked for his reaction when Jones mused about a superfight.
“Oh that’s cool, man,” he said. “We’ll have a great fight I think. It shows that I’m doing something right if you want to fight me.”
If the Jones superfight does materialize, Miocic was asked if the title should perhaps not be on the line, considering Jones has never fought at heavyweight.
“Yeah, that’s true. I mean there is a lot of ways you can look at it. I’m not good at stuff. Like, if I was a matchmaker, I wouldn’t be fighting,” he said. “So I’m just a fighter and they tell me who I’m gonna fight. So that’s all I worry about.”