Jon Jones Sees Eventual Future at Heavyweight, Wants Third Bout vs. Cormier at 205

By Mike Sloan Dec 30, 2018

It had been two-and-a-half years since Jon Jones officially scored a win inside the famed UFC Octagon, but Saturday’s victory may have been his sweetest to date. Jones, arguably the greatest mixed martial artist in the history of the sport, fought a much different fight in his rematch against rival Alexander Gustafsson in the main event of UFC 232 at the Forum in Inglewood, Calif.. When the two first locked horns at UFC 165 in 2013, “Bones” was taken to the brink of defeat and had to dig deep to eke out an extremely close decision win. This time around, however, Jones ended things emphatically in the third round. “My dad said to me when he left the hotel room today, ‘Don’t chase Gus. People cheered when he ran away from me, so don’t chase him,’” Jones told the media at the post-fight press conference late Saturday night. “I changed it up and kind of out-Gustafssoned Gustafsson. He kept saying he wanted to put pressure on me so I backed up and scored points. I think his aggression worked against him.” It most certainly did because when Jones created proper space, the lanky Swede couldn’t do much. “Bones” attacked Gustafsson’s legs with nasty kicks and he pepper his face with slick lead and counter punches and elbows. Once Jones had his adversary hobbled from the leg kicks, he scored an easy takedown and methodically broke him apart with punches. “In the first two rounds I was just trying to play smart and see if he added any new tools,” Jones said. “I didn’t see any and I saw that my level of range was stronger. I started thinking to not let him into this fight, allow him to build confidence. Once I noticed that and we were figuring him out, [it was time] to win the fight. I started to turn it on and fight my fight.” Jones seized Gustafsson’s back and pounded his head with punches until referee Mike Beltran intervened at the 2:02 mark of the third round. It didn’t take long before the focus shifted from the Gustafsson triumph and onto archrival Daniel Cormier and Jones’ highly-publicized failed drug screens. Neither inquiry seemed to please Jones much. “When it comes to Daniel Cormier, he’s always quiet unless it’s to speak out and discredit me and my achievements” Jones said. “He works so hard to discredit and delegitimize the fact that I already beat him twice. He was never the light heavyweight champion. He never beat me. He is no champ-champ and there will be an asterisk next to his name. The only way for him to do that would be for him to beat me.” Jones, who captured the vacant UFC light heavyweight title with the win over Gustafsson, still has a long way to go in order to restore his image. His out-of-cage problems are well documented but the Albuquerque fighter said he’s ready to do whatever it takes to prove he’s not a steroid-fueled cheater. “My plan is to face everything head-on, to take every test, every polygraph, pay every fine; whatever it takes to prove my innocence,” Jones proclaimed to the media. “I am still learning about this Turinabol. I hear that this can be in my body for the next seven years and that is really scary. They never found short-term metabolites in my body. If this was a new thing, it would be in my body. I have only had long-term metabolites in my body, not short-term or medium-term metabolites. I’ve been drug tested by several different organizations tonight and I will be vindicated; I will be proven innocent. I am looking to get my last DC fight overturned.” Jones remarked that he has no desire to fight Cormier at heavyweight, only at 205 pounds because he feels there is some unfinished business between the two at that weight class. But while “Bones” refused to name any possible future opponent by name, he did admit that he wants to step up to the heavyweight division. “Eventually I will,” he said. “I will eventually entertain taking super fights against certain opponents.”


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