01 Jan Jack Hermansson: UFC ‘working on’ securing U.S. visa for Chris Weidman bout
The UFC is currently looking for opponents for Chris Weidman, but his original dance partner Jack Hermansson believes the promotion is continuing to try to secure him a visa so he can compete in the United States.
Hermansson was scheduled to meet Weidman in the main event of UFC Oklahoma, an event which has since been canceled. At the moment, only essential travel is granted to the U.S., but “The Joker” was told that the UFC is still attempting to secure his visa.
“Right now, I’m not sure they will be able to get me a new visa, they are working on it and as soon as things are sorted, and the UFC thinks they can make it happen, so I’m sure they will,” Hermansson told MMA Fighting’s Eurobash podcast.
“I’m not too sure what day I got the notice [regarding traveling restrictions to the U.S.], but it was not unexpected. I trained hard for the fight, but I knew this could happen, but I’m still training and waiting for a new chance that it will show up.”
Hermansson revealed that the UFC was already attempting to have fighters on reserve in case the he could not travel to the U.S. Yet, as far as the former Cage Warriors champion was told, he is still the first choice to face Weidman next, at a date that has yet to be confirmed.
“I am the matchup that they want, but at the same time they’re trying to get reserves. That was the situation when we were supposed to fight as well. They had a couple of reserves in case I couldn’t make it inside the States, but then they postponed the whole thing anyway. Right now, I’m not sure. I’m speaking to the UFC and right now they still want to make the fight happen. I guess if they can’t make it happen soon enough they will have someone for Weidman.”
The Swede admitted that it has been difficult to stay focused due to the unpredictability of the situation.
“It’s hard to have that laser focus. The motivation is still there, but just the focus where thinking, ‘Am I really going to fight on that day?’ You don’t want to lock yourself into [a date] because everything can change in a second. I’m trying to stay open minded and in good shape and we’ll see what will happen.”
He underlined why he felt as though Weidman was a strong opponent to be matched with despite his current two-fight skid.
“His accomplishments and his big name was the reason I was taking this fight,” said Hermansson.
“Some people are saying, ‘You shouldn’t take that fight, you should take someone else,’ but not everyone understands that I can’t pick and choose. I want to fight the champ, but that doesn’t mean UFC will give me the champ! If I get the option of a few up-and-comers and a former champ, I’ll take the former champ. I think Weidman is a good opponent and I think the fans, especially the fans — I don’t think the fighters underestimate him — but the fans are underestimating Weidman right now. Even though he was knocked out a few times he was doing really well in all of those fights and he’s trouble for anyone that’s fighting him. You should never underestimate a guy like Chris Weidman.”
With Dana White claiming that “Fight Island” will have no travel restrictions for international fighters in a recent interview with Yahoo! Sports, Hermansson declared interest in competing at the location, which is still unknown.
“I would love to be on a [Fight Island] card, because the interest from the fans and the rest of the world will be huge just to see what is this about, where is it and how it’s going to look – everything like that. I would love to be on a Fight Island card, and if the possibility comes, I will sign up for sure.”
Check out Jack Hermansson’s latest appearance on Eurobash. It begins at 38:00.