For many years now, fans have been watching and waiting for Jon Jones to finally make the move up from 205 pounds to heavyweight. He’d already proven himself to be the greatest light heavyweight fighter in the history of mixed martial arts, to the point whereby he’d beaten some of the biggest and best names to ever step foot in the division.
The next step on his journey was expected to come in 2020 after he saw off the challenge of Dominick Reyes, but between disputes with the UFC, the pandemic and wanting to make sure his body was in the right shape, we still haven’t seen ‘Bones’ go after that second title.
Chael Sonnen, who fought and lost to Jones back at UFC 159, recently gave his thoughts on Jon’s situation.
Video: Chael Sonnen analyses Jon Jones
“He wants to be questioned, he wants to be challenged. I think he left 205 because it had been exhausted. He’s looking around and going yeah I’m having close fights with Reyes, close fights with Santos, but he was better than that. He wasn’t getting the training, it wasn’t getting pulled out of him, the audience was expecting too much from him. I think he wants to be in a position where he really is questioned.
“I think he’s got a match-up problem. We took the last two years to move Jon into heavyweight at a weight he’s comfortable at and tell the story to the audience, can Jon Jones overcome a deficit? That deficit is simply going to be a size disadvantage, but now they’re talking about putting him with Stipe. Jon is gonna weigh in heavier than Stipe and that whole two-year experiment is going to go up in smoke when they get to the scale. I think the right opponent is important.”
It’s been discussed for so long now that Jon Jones vs Stipe Miocic genuinely feels inevitable. Stipe is a former champion and a veteran of the sport, whereas Jones needs a genuine challenge to really test what he’s capable of at heavyweight.
Sure, the likes of Tai Tuivasa, Ciryl Gane and Curtis Blaydes are out there for him, but the name value of taking on someone like Miocic would almost certainly lead to a PPV main event – especially if there’s an interim title on the line.
If he can get past him, a crack at the king Francis Ngannou would almost certainly be on the cards.