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On July 6, Jon Jones
be making his second defense of the
Ultimate Fighting Championship
light heavyweight title he
reclaimed by beating Alexander
a second time. His opponent, Thiago
, will be making his first stab at the belt. That fight
will be the headliner for UFC 239, and the numbers below only speak
of its brewing intensity.
Jones’ one and only defeat was a disqualification due to illegal
downward elbows he landed on Matt Hamill
at “The Ultimate Fighter 10” Finale. That happened on Dec. 5, 2009,
and since then, Jones has been in 16 fights, winning 15, with a
lone no contest. His long list of victims includes Brandon
, Ryan Bader
, Ovince St.
and Gustafsson (twice).
Santos is on a winning run of his own, which now stretches to four.
He decisioned Kevin
and finished Eryk Anders
and Jan Błachowicz. His string of impressive
performances is the reason he is now ranked No. 2 at light
heavyweight and was awarded the opportunity to challenge Jones for
UFC championship experience
For Santos, this is a first, and a well-deserved championship bout.
Jones, of course, has had multiple championship appearances, 13 to
be exact. He snatched the light heavyweight strap from Rua at UFC
128 and defended it eight times before he was stripped of the title
for violating the promotion's Athlete Code of Conduct policy — but
not without breaking the UFC record for the most consecutive title
defenses. He would win the belt twice more and get stripped of it
on both occasions due to failed drug tests. But after beating
Gustafsson again at UFC 232, he has so far held on to the
Jones completely dominated Smith in all five rounds when they met
at UFC 235. “Lionheart” simply had no answer for Jones’ attacks.
Despite being deducted two points in round four following an
illegal knee, “Bones” still earned the judges’ nods. Santos, on the
other hand, was able to finish Smith in the second frame. It all
started with a clean leg kick to the body. “Marreta” rushed forward
and landed some punches and elbows until referee Marc Goddard
stopped the fight at 2:03.
With 16 career stoppages in 21 victories, Santos prides of a 76
percent finishing rate. He has recorded 15 wins by KO or TKO and
one by submission. Only five of his career wins came by decision.
Jones has a slightly lower finishing rate at 67 percent. He holds
10 victories by KO or TKO and six by submission. Eight of those
professional wins were by decision.
As aforementioned, Jones’ lone defeat was via disqualification to
Hamill. As for Santos, he has lost six times in 27 fights, having
bowed to Vicente
, Uriah Hall