In UFC 235, Jones penned the very first successful defense of his next light heavyweight title reign and ninth tournament defense entire, scarcely being jeopardized as he cruised to a unanimous decision win over challenger Anthony Smith. Together with “Bones” appearing to exit the struggle relatively unscathed — though he was given a conditional six-month healthcare suspension that can be cleared by a doctor — it seems likely that the champion is likely to soon be back for action sooner rather than later.
Jones’ schedule will be dependent on how his team decides to deal with the fighter’s recovery and rest, and what match-up makes the best sense. Now, you will find lots of names in Jones’s orbit, for example a pair of names that are fresh at 205 lbs, former middleweight stand-out Thiago Santos and rising celebrity Johnny Walker.
It’s Santos who looks poised to find the next shot at Jones based on his own latest victory at light heavyweight. “Marreta” is 3-0 in his own brand fresh division and he just overcome Jan Blachowicz via third-round TKO at UFC Prague, putting an end to Blachowicz’s four-fight winning streak. Santos, 35, was fighting professionally as 2010 and it has won eight of his past nine fights altogether, seven by knockout.
Jones’ coach Brandon Gibson appeared on to chat about Santos and answer questions about several other implied competitors.
“That’s everything Dana was alluding to at the press conference,”” Gibson said, if asked when he thought Santos wouldbe Jones’ second challenger. “He’s been looking great. He’S-A powerful, very successful 205-pounder. I’m pretty sure ’s a thing that intrigues a great deal of fans and I enjoy that there’s some fresh blood in the light heavyweight division.
“After Jon launched it was a lot similar to the elderly reign of several of those Pride legends. Even the Shoguns, the Rampage Jacksons, the Vitors, there have been many of those legends for people to chase afterwards. And now Jon’therefore legend and those younger guys are coming like Johnny Walker, like Thiago Santos, so it’s pretty cool to take this position now. ”
Much like almost all of Jones’ opponents, Santos would probably enter a matchup with Jones being huge underdog; nevertheless, his exciting stand up style atleast creates the risk that he can induce the champion to a high-paced struggle.
Gibson isn’t overly stressed about JacksonWink MMA’s biggest star getting dragged to a dogfight.
“I think [Jones has] fought a lot of brawlers,”” Gibson explained. “I’d consider Anthony Smith that a brawler. I think we’ve finished some very polished MMA boxers with volatile hooks like Rampage Jackson, like Shogun, after which we’ve fought a whole lot of quite polished technical MMA strikers like Gustafsson, like Machida.
“Along with Thiago brings a different sort of power. I don’t think he’so polished or refined as a Shogun or a Rampage, I think he’therefore probably a little nearer to Anthony Smith’s style. ”
As for Walker, it may be too soon to be speaking about him UFC name challenger, but his three Octagon looks are incredibly promising: A 1:57 knock-out of Khalil Rountree, a 15-second knock-out of Justin Ledet, and a 36-second knock-out of ranked contender Misha Cirkunov.
Walker is about as fresh as fresh blood can get — and Gibson sees him being on the ideal path to someday fight Jones.
“That kid’s impressive, ” he ’s volatile,” Gibson explained. “I saw a really impressive stat that he’s merely thrown 30 strikes or something in his combined UFC career, so his knockout-to-strike ratio is like, 1-to-9. That’s impressive. We’ve unquestionably got our eye on him. He’s charismatic, ” he ’s pleasure, he’s got a swagger to himhe’s creative. That’s a struggle that is unquestionably on the horizon, ” I ’m sure. ”
Cormier and Jones have fought with Jones getting the greater of “DC” about both occasions; his next encounter was overturned to a no-contest later Jones tested positive for prohibited substances. Considering their last meeting, Cormier was on an absolute tear and speak with a third meeting has dropped.
Anybody expecting Cormier to chime on societal networking during UFC 236 was abandoned frustrated, but Gibson was thankful that there wasn’t any on the web bickering atleast for a single nightif he knows the competition will never evaporate.
“I think that will be vain, everyone will always WISh to find a trilogy there and DC’s needed much success since Jon’s fighting, and he’s double champ and heavyweight champ, however I think for now there’s a lot of interesting match ups in each of the individual weight classes, so I just like having a good time with that idea,” Gibson explained.
That said, there is still interest within a oft-teased bout with Lesnar, an expert wrestling superstar who was clearly one of those UFC’s biggest draws during his period with the promotion. Gibson agrees that there are a great deal of good reasons to possess Jones struggle Lesnar, even when it isn’t the most compelling struggle in the tactical outlook.
“I think, for the casuals that a guy like Brock brings to the game, it is going to soon be super high amounts and a high cash back,”” Gibson explained. “I think for the battle, just how big this man that Brock is, I think that’s something that intrigues Jon. Brock will bring something different.
“It’d be fun, it’d be interesting, however as much as, is Brock the very polished mixed martial artist we’ve competed against and what is our game-plan gonna have to be and these matters we’re going to need to watch out for and prepare — no, I really don’t think it’so. ”
Whoever Jones struggles second, Gibson is excited about the possibility of Jones defending his name a few more times in 2013 or even making that highly-anticipated go to heavyweight even if it’s just temporary. What matters most is getting Jones back in the cage the moment he’s ready to return back again.
“I understand Thiago Santos is looking very strong. Jon always gets hyped to the thought of a superfight. He said he WIShes to fight with three or even four times this past year. You want to provide him a small break, however,”” Gibson explained. “We want to make sure that that passion is always well lit under him and time-management coaching camps is unquestionably a grind. It was exciting to get in there though and possess this quick turn around and ensure there wasn’t any ring rust, and I think being a fan of this sport, we’re lucky to have the biggest of all time actively competing once more.
“He still WIShes to stay busy. We’ll see. ”