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Tyron Woodley and Ben Askren Aren’t Fans of UFC 236’s Double Interim Title Fight Card

February 26, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Tyron Woodley UFC 235

Tyron Woodley and Ben Askren spoke at a media lunch about why they’re not looking forward to watching UFC 236’s two interim title fights. Highlights from the two are below per MMAjunkie:

Woodley on the interim title fights at UFC 236: “This is the funny thing to me. The interim belt is the biggest joke on earth…Ooh, a stacked card! A double interim belt. I’m not trying to hate, because I’m not trying to get my ass back in the dog house. … But when you think about it, you’ve got a current champion, which out of all champions, Max Holloway may be our favorite champion. If you ask all the champions who their favorite champion is, we might all say Max Holloway. He don’t have to go up to fight for an interim belt. Unless he’s fighting for an actual lightweight belt, it doesn’t make sense.”

Askren on the Max Holloway vs. Dustin Poirier interim lightweight title fight: “Why did they force a title fight at 155? I think that’s kind of what Tyron is saying, too. It’s silly. Let Max defend his (145-pound) belt. There’s five other things to do that make a lot more sense than that. Or maybe everyone is saying no (to fights), I don’t know.”

Woodley on Kelvin Gastelum vs. Israel Adesanya for the interim middleweight title: “When you’re looking at Gastelum (vs.) Adesanya interim belt, in that situation I think it’s warranted.”

Woodley on almost being being booked for an interim welterweight title fight himself: “In my situation, there was no need for an interim belt. I hadn’t even been out eight months, and I would’ve fought the person maybe the next month. I think when you do an interim just to do an interim, it takes away the juice from having a real belt. When you just got guys asking to fight for an interim strap … it’s like saying, ‘Well, let me fight for second place.’ It’s just weird to me.”