We can add former interim UFC lightweight champion Dustin Poirier to the list of those who disagree with Jon Jones vs. Stipe Miocic being the next heavyweight title fight.

In 2024, few topics have been discussed as fiercely as the championship debate in the UFC's heavyweight division, which currently boasts two champions, but only one of them is keen to fight the other.

After Jones had to cancel his planned defense against Miocic at Madison Square Garden last November due to an injury, Tom Aspinall stepped in at short notice and took the interim gold at the expense of Sergei Pavlovich.

While this would normally result in a unification fight, Jones stuck to selecting Miocic as his next fight despite opposition from Aspinall as well as many fighters, fans and experts.

Meanwhile, Aspinall will put his belt on the line in a rematch against Curtis Blaydes at UFC 304 in Manchester this month. In the lead up to that fight on July 27, Jones' name will no doubt loom large and there will be talk of Aspinall making one last attempt to get the better of Miocic.

However, according to a UFC star, a third option may be the most promising candidate when Jones returns to action after his injury…

Poirier: It is the “perfect time” for Jones vs. Pereira

At a recent studio appearance at The MMA lesson Along with Ariel Helwani, Poirier gave his assessment of the current state of the heavyweight division and the ongoing debate about who Jones' next challenger should be.

While most opponents of Miocic, who wants a chance more than three years after his KO loss to Francis Ngannou, put Aspinall in that position, “The Diamond” wants to see Alex Pereira shoot for the title in two divisions.

“Stipe has been out for quite a while. Stipe could come back and be a completely different person,” Poirier said. “Aspinall is obviously legit; he's an interim world champion, he's beaten some good guys. But he doesn't have the aura that Alex and Jones have. … (Pereira) is starting to get that aura that a Fedor (Emelianenko) or an Anderson (Silva) had.”

“It's the perfect time to do it. I would (do it now). Yes, (skip the Miocic fight),” Poirier continued. “He's bigger! It's a blockbuster, brother. … And who is he going to fight at light heavyweight? Ankalaev? Nothing against Ankalaev, but I'm not excited (about it). At the point he's at in his career, he's a superstar. I want to see him fight Jones at heavyweight.”

Jones himself has mentioned Pereira as an option for the future and suggested that he is more intriguing than interim champion Aspinall.

But just like the other titleholder in his division, “Bones” has refused to move away from Miocic to allow for a superfight with Pereira towards the end of 2024.

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