Jon Jones is unlike any fighter ever seen in the history of MMA. Anyone who understands this combat sport can swear that the sheer dominance that he showcased in the UFC light heavyweight division will never be seen again.
Combining his raw destructive power, deep understanding of different fighting styles, and his ability to outsmart any opponent thanks to his exceptional fighting IQ, Bones Jones was a nightmare for any fighter in the weight class.
This is probably the reason he was an all-time favorite for bettors and sports-interested casino players. The odds were always in his favor, and he always delivered. For punters, winning a generous amount from one of these bets has always been pretty simple—find a reliable bookmaker or casino, and sites like casinos.com have made this step even more straightforward. Finding the best odds as well as great casinos out there has never been easier than this.
Anyway, let’s get back to the history of Jon Jones as a fighter. His MMA career has been as full of controversies as it has been full of accomplishments. Now that he’s back in UFC with a first-round win against Cyril Gane to become the heavyweight champion, it’s high time we took a look back. Let’s go on a journey through the dynamic MMA career of Jon Bones Jones.
Jones’ origin was in Rochester, New York where he grew up. He got into wrestling during high school and went on to become the state champion. During college, he won the national judo championship. Jon was already showing great promise of becoming one of the greatest names in the history of combat sports.
But the breaking point came when his girlfriend became pregnant. Like many others, making some much-needed money became the driving factor for him to approach the path of MMA. Jones left college to become a professional fighter.
He started his pro career in 2008, competing in local promotions. Twenty-year-old Jones was wreaking havoc, knocking out older and more experienced fighters one after another. The hype was real, and it took no time to catch the attention of the big leagues. It took a mere four months after the start of his pro career for the UFC to reach out to him wanting to sign him. The rest is history.
Jones’ debut fight in UFC was against Andre Gusmao, which he accepted on a two weeks notice. And the world saw the twenty-year-old newbie dominate a veteran fighter on the biggest and the toughest MMA stage in the world. He won the next two fights in style, which earned him fights against top-class fighters in the weight class, and he climbed the ladders in a flash.
The Youngest Champion in History
Jones fought two fights in 2010 which were considered to be good competition. But he mauled Brandon Vera and Vladimir Matyushenko and proved that he deserved the title shot more than any fighter at the time. And, after defeating Ryan Bader in 2011, he earned the light heavyweight championship fight against Mauricio Rua.
UFC fans saw the 23-year-old Jones batter the best fighter in the division at the time. Dominating the three rounds until the referee stopped the fight and saved the champion from further damage. Jones got crowned the champion, the youngest in history, and everyone admitted that Jones was the best-ever fighting talent in the UFC.
Stripped of the Title
Here, we need a little context. January 2015—Jones was fresh out of a title defense fight against Cormier which, as many believed, could dethrone him. He got a well-deserved win. But, later it was revealed that he tested positive for cocaine prior to the match.
Later that year, he got involved in a hit-and-run case in Albuquerque where he injured a pregnant woman. Jones turned himself in later, which might have saved him from jail time, but he got sentenced to eighteen months of probation. UFC didn’t just strip him of his title and suspend him; they removed him from the rankings altogether.
The much-awaited comeback of the undefeated former champion happened in April 2016, when he faced Ovince Saint Preux inside the octagon and won the interim light heavyweight championship. The fight against Cormier to regain his title was scheduled, but lightning struck the same place twice.
Jones tested positive for banned substances again, which resulted in the event being dropped. He got banned for another year and stripped of the title he had just won. Another record in his name—being the only champion to be stripped twice.
His next comeback came in July 2017, when he faced Daniel Cormier for the title. The fight was close for two rounds until Cormier got kicked in the face in the third and got knocked unconscious by blow after blow. But the drama surrounding Jones seemed to be a never-ending one. He later tested positive for steroids and the fight was declared a no-contest. Jones got banned for another fifteen months.
Finally, Jones came back in late 2018 to face Alexander Gustafsson and reclaimed the title of light heavyweight champion and did so in spectacular fashion.
Jon Jones has showcased unmatched dominance in the UFC light heavyweight division. His massive reach, intense physicality, strategic brilliance, and versatility of skills made him a nightmare for opponents. A career that has been marked by controversies and remarkable achievements, has begun anew.
Despite setbacks and suspensions one after the other, he has made comebacks and reclaimed his titles, solidifying his legacy as one of, if not the greatest fighter in the history of MMA. Time will tell how much more he’ll go now that he is the UFC heavyweight champion.