Leave it to Jon Jones to crush the hopes and dreams of UFC fans. Just days after UFC president Dana White told the media that the UFC had plans for a Jones vs. Anderson Silva fight in the fall, Bones made sure to remind fans that super fights in the UFC are simply more myth than reality.
[adinserter block=”1″]The ironic thing about super fights in the UFC is that these big dream fights are often talked about for years yet rarely ever signed. I’ll give the UFC credit for pulling off Georges St-Pierre vs. Nick Diaz after a couple of failed attempts but their inability to sign the mega bouts is a hump that the company just seem to get over.
In the case of Anderson Silva vs. Jon Jones it appeared that there was some real activity here in regards to this fight actually being made. After saying no for almost two years, the Spider had a recent change of heart and has started talking openly about his desire to fight Jones. Dana White quickly hopped on that bandwagon and both he and the UFC middleweight champ even seemed to have a date in mind, the 20th anniversary event.
And then Jon Jones came along to remind you that dream fights in the UFC don’t happen that easily.
Jones is doing media for his upcoming UFC 159 headliner with Chael Sonnen and was asked about fighting Silva on Monday’s conference call.
Jon Jones has his eyes set on bigger fish than Anderson Silva. Jones is eyeing Tito Ortiz, specifically Ortiz’s record of five UFC light heavyweight title defenses. Saturday’s fight against Sonnen will tie that record. Jones wants to break it and according to the champ, that is more important than any super fight. Jones told the media that after Sonnen he wants to defend the title in November before entertaining super fights. When asked specifically about the Silva fight Jones responded, “I said what I said.”
Likable guy isn’t he?
Now I will say this before I declare the November fight dead with Silva. This could simply be a public negotiating ploy by Jones. Silva is saying yes, the UFC certainly wants it, so at this point Jones does have all the cards when it comes to negotiating. Jones has said no to fights in the past that wound up being signed, such as the one this Saturday. Maybe this is nothing more than a negotiating tactic.
Jones likes to call himself a “business man.” What kind of sane business man would pass up an opportunity to make the most money he has ever made by fighting Silva (on the anniversary show nonetheless) for a title defense against Lyoto Machida?
Jones is a wealthy man but he doesn’t draw big buyrates and he hasn’t been on top that long. He is preparing for a fight now that has less interest than any championship fight he has participated in on pay per view. The Silva fight would be a life changer for him. He can go chase Tito’s record after the Silva fight. Timing is everything and fighting Silva on the 20th anniversary show would give the UFC its biggest fight ever. If he is sincere, passing that pay day up for a record that quite honestly nobody really cares about is just insane.
[adinserter block=”2″]This would also explain Dana White’s recent statements regarding Anderson Silva vs. GSP. That super fight (which White guaranteed) was dead. GSP was scheduled to fight Johny Hendricks and the company was looking at Silva vs. Jones for the fall. Out of nowhere White told reporters last week that the company was making another play for that fight and were waiting on GSP for an answer. Maybe Jones is serious and now realizing that they have no mega fight set up for the 20th anniversary show, the UFC went back to the GSP-Silva well?
There also has to be some responsibility placed on the UFC here. It is one thing when boxing dream fights can’t be made due to rival promoters. The UFC promotes all of these guys and yet fails time and time again to pull off these mega fights. Nobody is forcing these guys to fight so unless you have verbal agreements from these guys, it is time to stop teasing the public with talk of these mega fights that never deliver.
[amazon_link id=”0062195638″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Georges St-Pierre: The Way of the Fight Book[/amazon_link]
[amazon_link id=”B008VKZX08″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Anderson Silva: Like Water[/amazon_link]