Ryan Spann wants to climb all the way to the top of the UFC’s light heavyweight ladder, no matter how long that takes, then jump off and head to heavyweight, or retire.
Spann was talking to reporters ahead of his main event bout with Nikita Krylov at UFC Vegas 70 in Las Vegas, and admitted that he had plans to capture championship gold at 205 pounds, then set the stage for one of his Fortis MMA teammates, Kennedy Nzechukwu, to pick up the mantle.
“My plan is to get the belt, then I’ll leave it for Kennedy,” Spann said.
“When Kennedy’s ready, I’ll either go up, or I’ll be done.”
Spann faces Krylov at the UFC Apex on Saturday, February 25, but he revealed that there were other plans in the works for him that were thrown into disarray by the UFC 282 reshuffle that saw Jan Blachowicz and Magomed Ankalaev battle to a draw in a bid to capture the then-vacant light heavyweight title after Jiri Prochazka relinquished the title due to injury.
“I was going to fight … Jan at first,” he said.
“Then from there I was going to fight for the No. 1 (contender spot) guaranteed, and then fight the winner for, at the time, was an interim belt.
“So, Magomed and Glover were going to fight for the interim, and then I was going to fight for No. 1, because they already knew that homie (Prochazka) was going to be out for a while.”
However, things were thrown up in the air when Glover Teixeira declined the opportunity to fight Ankalaev for the title and Blachowicz was drafted in to replace him. Then, after they fought to a draw, Jamahal Hill was swiftly booked in a fight with Texeira for the still-vacant crown.
The one man left without a dance partner was Spann, and now what appeared to be a clear path toward a title shot now looks somewhat trickier. But “Superman” said he plans on sticking around long enough to complete the job, no matter how long it takes.
“I don’t do this to show off,” Spann said.
“I don’t do this to fight for no reason. I want what I want, so I can get out when I can get out. I want to get in and out, and the longer it takes me to get there, the longer I got to stay.”
Spann will now face Krylov in the main event at the UFC Apex, and said he’s not concerning himself with “The Miner’s” skillset heading into the bout.
“I don’t know his style. I don’t know what he’s going to do, I don’t care what he’s going to try to do,” he said.
“I just know that if I have fun, and be calm, I’ll see everything.”