Curtis Blaydes wasn't impressed with Derrick Lewis' victory over Ilir Latifi at UFC 247 and believes he'll have a distinct advantage in one area if he ever fights "The Black Beast."
"I would destroy him on the ground," Blaydes told theScore. "And he already knows that. Because after the New York fight (UFC 244) when I called him out, some reporter asked him about it like immediately after his fight."
Blaydes added: "I guess he had seen my tweet ... I was like 'Yeah, I'm not impressed.' Because I don't think he beat Blagoy Ivanov (at UFC 244). So I tweeted about that and they asked him about the possible matchup.
"He was like, 'Ah yeah, Curtis Blaydes, he probably gonna take me down. And when he takes me down I'm going to lay down there, I'm gonna get my breath, I'm gonna get on up and knock his ass out.' I'm like, 'you think I'm going to let you breathe (down there)?'"
Blaydes (13-2) knocked out former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos in the main event of UFC Raleigh in January. The 28-year-old Elevation Fight Team member is hopeful the win will earn him a heavyweight title shot, but he understands it could depend on the fight between Francis Ngannou and Jairzinho Rozenstruik at UFC Columbus on Mar. 28.
Ngannou holds two UFC wins over Blaydes. Should he pick up another victory at UFC Columbus, Ngannou will likely become the No. 1 contender in the heavyweight division. That's where Lewis comes into the picture.
Lewis (22-7), who earned his second straight win with a unanimous decision victory over Latifi last Saturday, has been linked to Blaydes in the past. A matchup between the two would also make sense from a rankings standpoint; Blaydes is ranked No. 3 in the division while Lewis ranks No. 5.
Blaydes revealed he's currently looking to fight again in early July for International Fight Week. A showdown with Lewis could be exactly what both fighters need at this stage of their respective careers.