The story of Jon Jones, the human being is a complicated one. The story of Jon Jones, the athlete is far less complex as it is clear that Jones is the current pound for pound best fighter in the world. Jones’ dominant run at 205 pounds was halted by last year’s hit and run arrest , and although his latest performance against Ovince Saint Preux was deemed unimpressive by many, it’s safe to say Jones is finally back on track.
The youngest champion in UFC history has experienced growing pains for the entire world to see and his lengthy career thus far has only left opponents as well as fans wondering what his weaknesses are. These very thoughts have led many to believe that Jones needed to move up to heavyweight in order to challenge himself against competitors closer to his size. Jones is no stranger to teasing a move up in weight in the past but his recent comments on no longer being interested in going up to heavyweight have left many wondering what’s next.
Jones has mentioned Daniel Cormier, Anthony Johnson and Alexander Gustafsson as the three men left to conquer in his division. Gustafsson was able to take advantage of the chinks found in Jones’ armor back in UFC 165 but after collecting tough losses against both Anthony Johnson and Daniel Cormier, the rematch with Jones is not as tempting. Anthony Johnson’s power presents a great challenge to Jones who is known for having a strong chin, but since Cormier made him look human in UFC 187, Johnson appears as yet another victim on the waiting list. Cormier gave Jones a tough fight last January but he came up short and is even more closer to retirement as their rematch approaches.
Jones once talked about a move to heavyweight as if it were a foregone conclusion and even had some believing his new power lifting regime was a sign of things to come. Despite bulking up to 238 pounds in his offseason, Jones appears adamant on staying at 205. He’s also mentioned his intentions of having a longer career than he once anticipated and if that’s the case, will fans be okay with Jones fighting the Corey Anderson’s of the division?
Will there still be interest in seeing larger sized middleweights like Chris Weidman and Luke Rockhold make the move to 205 since their recent one sided losses? Only time will tell and as we are continuously reminded, there are no guarantees in the fight game. Especially with three of the toughest fighters in the division eager to get their crack at the king.