Jon Jones-Daniel Cormier was a huge fight the first time it went down, and now, depending on how things play out, round two could be even bigger.
As you know, Cormier laid claim to the UFC’s light-heavyweight title last night, by tapping out Anthony Johnson with a third round, rear-naked-choke. It’s the latest chip to fall after Jones was arrested last month, and was stripped of the title.
Since Jones decisioned Cormier in January, and defended the title a record 8 times, naturally it’s been somewhat difficult adjusting to a reality where “Bones” is not the champ. But, as Cormier relayed at the post-fight presser, none of this changes the fact that he’s accomplished something extremely important (quote via MMA Fighting.com):
“You see what’s sitting right there? That’s a gold belt,” Cormier said. “That thing’s reserved for the UFC champion. I didn’t disqualify myself from competition. Jon did. Jon’s the number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world. We all know that. But, he disqualified himself from this competition right now. So I am the champion. I’m very proud of what I accomplished tonight.”
So, depending on what happens with Jones in the coming months, the renowned fighter could be facing his rival for a second time, when he returns to the cage.
“I fought a very tough guy that deserved to be there. If anything, I think what tonight showed is that if Jon Jones can get his stuff together, I mean, how special is he? That I just beat the guy that people thought that he could beat and he just beat me. So I mean, we can’t take this guy for granted, he’s a special talent. “
There’s no question Jones is a ridiculously talented fighter, and in fact, the case could be made he is the greatest fighter ever. Now it will be interesting to see whether he can build on that legacy.
UFC 187 was hosted by the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.