Former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold plans his return to the cage, around two years after his last fight.
Rockhold's last appearance in the Octagon was at UFC 239 in July of 2019 where he suffered a second round knockout to Jan Blachowicz. While the retirement question loomed around his career, Rockhold has since decided on continuing, and now eyes a return by summer. He spoke to Submission Radio and outlined his plan.
"I want to come back for something that gets me excited, and I want to come back when I’m ready, when my body’s ready. And I think early, late summer would be ideal. It’s just matching up with the right person and the right thing that’s going to put me to where I want. I’m not looking to just play around."
The question of opponent remains along with which weight class. Rockhold is currently keeping his options open.
"I wanna go straight to the gut of this division and most likely 185. Not ruling out 205, but I really just gotta push my body to get in shape and see where it wants to go," he said. "Right now, I’m light. I’m like 205-208 (pounds) right now, and I think that legitimately it’s going to be looking like I’m going back to middleweight. But we will see. If something pops up, you never know. If a fight falls apart, like many injuries do and COVID and everything that happens, I could be ready sooner than later."
Rockhold noted a surgery he went through in 2020 and lingering injuries, so he is still being patient about a return: “If I’m gonna come back, I’m not gonna come back compromised. I’ve done too much to go in there and fight compromised. If I’m healthy, If I know I’m healthy and I’m clear-headed when I'm going out there, I can beat anybody. So, that’s what I’m waiting for, and that’s what I’m getting to right now.”