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Luke Rockhold says he’s getting turned down by top 10 at 185: ‘Everyone’s just making excuses’

The former UFC middleweight champion is having some trouble finding an opponent for his return to the Octagon. 

Luke Rockhold during media day at UFC 239.
Luke Rockhold during media day at UFC 239.
Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Luke Rockhold is in need of an opponent for his return to the Octagon but cannot seem to find one.

The former UFC middleweight champion has not competed since his last appearance at UFC 239, where he made his light heavyweight debut and was knocked out by Jan Blachowicz in the second round of their fight. In that time, Rockhold mulled over a potential retirement from competition, decided against it and worked to restore his body to tip-top condition in preparation for his comeback.

Rockhold recently gave an update to fans about what he has been doing during his off-time as well as the issues he has — and still is — facing in terms of getting an opponent to fight him.

“I feel good,” Rockhold told Mike Swick on the Real Quick with Mike Swick podcast. “I’ve taken some time off to just get my body right. Had quite a few surgeries and able to navigate the waters and feel good about it. Just giving some time to do me [and] organize life, business and live. It’s hard to live when you fight. I got it all out of my system and I’m trying to get that fire back and smash some heads.”

Rockhold went on to reveal that he currently walks around at 205 pounds, which is where he feels the most comfortable, but it is not the weight he plans on returning at. He will be resuming his fight career at 185 pounds.

Although everything else is in place for Rockhold to come back, there is one thing missing. He needs an opponent, but is apparently being turned down by some of the top names in the division.

“It’s really about fighting someone who’s going to fight,” said Rockhold. “I need to find a top 10 guy who’s ready to sack up and ready to fight. There’s already been multiple people in the top 10 making excuses about why they don’t want to fight me. It’s just like, who the [expletive] are you to turn down the fight? Where is your entitlement and what you think you have?

“My last fight, it’s against Yoel Romero missing weight for a world title in Perth two and a half years ago. So, I’ve left the rankings but I haven’t really left the rankings. I’m still there just as much as I want to be and everyone knows who I am and what I can do, and I think everyone’s just making excuses on why they don’t want to fight me right now. We’ve been hunting down the list and trying to find something credible, something fun, something exciting.”

Rockhold continued by stating that he wants to have a fight that is equal parts exciting and sensible for what could presumably be another championship run.

“I’m not just gonna go fight anybody. I want something that gets me excited, that gets the fans excited and has a little momentum. Something that makes somewhat of sense. I want to come back in and I want to do this thing right.”