Jon Jones or Khabib Nurmagomedov? Glover Teixeira says pound-for-pound No. 1 an easy call

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Khabib Nurmagomedov looked mighty impressive in his UFC 242 win over Dustin Poirier, leading many to openly question whether or not he is the best fighter on the planet right now.

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones is often called the best pound-for-pound fighter in the sport, though the USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie MMA rankings have him sitting at No. 2, just behind Nurmagomedov, who took the top spot following former dual champ Daniel Cormier’s August loss to Stipe Miocic.

It’s an intriguing debate. Neither man has ever been beaten, even if Jones’ record does include one loss via disqualification. Jones (25-1 MMA, 19-1 UFC) certainly has the top championship accolades with a stunning 10 successful defenses of the UFC light heavyweight title, even if the run has been marred with controversy outside of the cage.

But the current lightweight champ’s past two fights, especially, have earned Nurmagomedov (28-0 MMA, 12-0 UFC) high praise. Vicious finishes of Poirier and Conor McGregor have proven him to be a scary proposition, and UFC light heavyweight Glover Teixeira said that’s what he’s found most impressive.

“I think Jon Jones is up there, for sure,” Teixeira told reporters, including MMA Junkie, at Thursday’s UFC on ESPN+ 16 media day. “Jon Jones, he’s been there. But after I saw Khabib’s last fight – Dustin Poirier, I saw that kid training and I saw how he good he is, and the way he dominated Dustin Poirier, in my mind, he’s definitely the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter.”

Teixeira, of course, had a brush with Jones, suffering a five-round decision loss in a failed bid to unseat “Bones” back at UFC 172 in April 2014. At 39, Teixeira is hoping to get another crack at the belt before he calls it a career, and he certainly has ample respect for the current champion of his division. But for Teixeira, Nurmagomedov is just a cut above his peers.

“Jon Jones has won more title defenses and all that, but Jon Jones hasn’t dominated opponents the way Khabib has been,” Teixeira. “Khabib just looks like way too much. He’s way above the guys. He’s like a 10, and the people he’s fighting are like a 7.”

Teixeira (29-7 MMA, 12-5 UFC) takes on Nikita Krylov (26-6 MMA, 7-4 UFC) at Saturday’s UFC on ESPN+ 16 event at Rogers Arena. The night’s full card streams live on ESPN+.

Report | Jon Jones will not fight again in 2019

According to Ariel Helwani, Jon Jones will not be fighting this year.

The light heavyweight champion teased a big fight announcement for this year, but Ariel Helwani squashed any speculation on Twitter.

“Buckle your seatbelts, my friends,” Jones wrote on Twitter. “Big fight announcement coming soon.”

“All but confirms Jones won’t fight again this year,” Helwani reported shortly thereafter. “There was some talk of Nov and Dec but nothing enticing out there.”

Jon Jones last fought at UFC 239, when he defeated Thiago Santos by split decision. He has no fight lined up currently.

There was talk of a trilogy fight between Jones and former UFC heavyweight champ Daniel Cormier. However, Cormier’s loss to Stipe Miocic at UFC 241 means he is likely focused on retirement as opposed to cutting weight for a light heavyweight bout against his adversary. Jones then teased the possibility of a fight against Stipe Miocic. However, Dana White extinguished any rumours that Jones would be fighting Miocic or Cormier. Instead, he said ‘Bones’ would be fighting light heavyweight Jan Blachowicz.

“I think Jan. I think Jan looked good in his last performance,” White told BT Sport. “And where he sits in the rankings, he’s the man.”

Jan Blachowicz is currently ranked #5 in the light heavyweight rankings. In his last fight, he knocked out Luke Rockhold in the second round.

Since White’s comments, The UFC has back-peddled and booked Blachowicz for a fight against Jacare Souza at UFC Fight Night on November 16 in São Paulo, Brazil. Ariel Helwani’s post was in response to that news.

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 9/11/2019.

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Jon Jones tells fan to buckle their seatbelts, teases fight announcement

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones has teased an upcoming title defense, and his potential opponent is hinting at getting the fight.

Jones took to Twitter Monday to tease a “big fight announcement.”

Here’s what the champ had to say:

“Buckle your seatbelt my friends, Big fight announcement coming soon”

Fans were immediately excited at the prospect of seeing Jones’ next fight. Jones last competed back in July, when he won a controversial split decision over Thiago Santos at UFC 239 to once again defend the UFC light heavyweight crown.

As for Jones’ next opponent, it looks like we are closer to confirming the man’s identity.

Light heavyweight contender Jan Blachowicz took to Twitter on Tuesday to tease that it will be him who fights Jones next. Here’s what Blachowicz had to say.

“Birds are twittering that the fight is coming…@ufc @danawhite”

Blachowicz fought on the same card as Jones vs. Santos. He knocked out Luke Rockhold in brutal fashion in an upset to emerge as one of the division’s top contender. Blachowicz has won five of his last six fights, with his lone loss coming against Santos earlier this year. The win over Rockhold was by far the biggest win of Blachowicz’ career and showed that he’s among the elite at 205lbs.

For Jones, Blachowicz might be considered a step down from some of the opponents he’s fought in his recent title defenses, such as Alexander Gustafsson and Daniel Cormier. But as we saw in the Santos fight, you can never count anyone out in any fight. Blachowicz could watch the Santos fight and see what he did well in that matchup and try to emulate that gameplan. It remains to be seen how the fight will play out, but either way, it looks like Jones vs. Blachowicz is coming up next.

Are you excited for a potential light heavyweight bout between Jon Jones and Jan Blachowicz?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 9/9/2019.

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Jon Jones explains why he was rooting for Dustin Poirier at UFC 242

Jon Jones made an accurate prediction for the UFC 242 main event, but was rooting for Dustin Poirier in the run-up to Poirier’s lightweight championship opportunity against Khabib Nurmagomedov.

The lightweight stars faced off at UFC 242 in Abu Dhabi. The undefeated champion Nurmagomedov was a clear favourite. So, it was no big surprise when he sealed the victory and submitted Poirier in the third round.

Nevertheless, Jon Jones was hoping the underdog would take home the championship belt, as he described at a press day earlier this summer.

“I’m rooting for Dustin, me and Dustin, we’ve worked together. We’re both sponsored by PureKana CBD…so he’s one of my business partners and I, quite frankly, don’t like Daniel Cormier teammates,” Jones said (via MMA Junkie). “So I am rooting for Dustin Poirier.”

Jon Jones has a long-standing beef with Daniel Cormier. ‘DC’ trains at American Kickboxing Academy with Javier Mendez, the same location where Khabib Nurmagomedov trains. Cormier and Nurmagomedov are very close, so Jones would unsurprisingly root for Poirier.

However, when asked who he had his money on to win, Jones made an informed decision.

“Khabib’s a wrestler,” he said. “I’m a wrestler, and wrestlers, oftentimes get to dictate where the fight goes…If I had to bet the house, I would lean on Khabib’s side, but I am hoping that Poirier can pull it off.”

Jon Jones is currently ranked, No. 1 in the UFC’s official pound-for-pound rankings. However, many are arguing that Nurmagomedov has proved he deserves the number one spot since he beat Poirier and maintained his 28-0 title reign.

Jones prediction proved that using your head over your heart is the usually the best way to make fight predictions. Who do you want to see Jones fight next? Let us know in the comments below.

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 9/9/2019.

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PHOTO | Jon Jones and Colby Covington party together in college

UFC standouts Jon Jones and Colby Covington have butted heads in recent years, but they used to be friends and roommates in college.

Since bunking together in school, both ‘Bones’ and ‘Chaos’ have gone on to have extremely succesful mixed martial arts careers.

Jon Jones (25-1 MMA) became the youngest UFC champion in promotional history at UFC 128 and has gone on to defend his light heavyweight belt on numerous occasions over the past few years.

Meanwhile, Colby Covington (15-1 MMA) made his Octagon debut in August of 2013, and 38 months later claimed the promotions interim welterweight title by defeating Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 225. In his most recent outing, ‘Chaos’ scored an absolutely dominant win over former welterweight kingpin Robbie Lawler.

Showcasing how times have changed since college, ‘Bones’ proclaimed that Lawler “let the whole world down” when he lost to Covington at UFC Newark.

Earlier today, an old photo of some better times between Jon Jones and Colby Covington surfaced on Twitter (courtesy of @MMA_UFC_BANTER).

While it seems unlikely given their recent exchanges on social media and in interviews, Colby Covington recently told BJPENN Radio that he is willing to not only take Jon Jones back as a friend, but also help the reigning light heavyweight kingpin with his life outside of the Octagon.

“I was trying to get a meeting with my boy Jon Bones,” Covington told BJPENN Radio. “Man, we used to share a bunk bed in college together. I was letting him know I was there for support man.”

Colby Covington continued asking Jon Jones to give him another chance.

“I’m turning, man. Maybe we can be friends. Maybe we can work this out and be friends Jonny, come on brother. Give me a chance, man. We used to be best friends in college sharing a bunk bed together,” he continued. “Let’s work this out (Jon Jones) we’ve been through more than any of these mother f*****s, especially the shady mother fuckers Malki and the First Round Management team. Those guys are yes men around you. I’m gonna be a real mother f****r around you and tell you how it is. I’m not gonna yes you and tell you this and that, you know? I am gonna get your life straight. Hopefully Jonny sees the light and he comes to the realness side.”

Do you think Jon Jones and Colby Covington will ever be able to bury the hatchet? Sound off in the comments section PENN Nation!

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Chael Sonnen to Jon Jones: ‘I’d rather see you type lines than snort them’

Chael Sonnen often mentions Jon Jones on his podcast. Unfortunately, he feels his comments on Jones are occasionally taken out of context, which prompts Jones to fire back on Twitter.

According to Sonnen, however, the silver lining is that Jones is better off trash talking on Twitter than getting into trouble outside the cage.

“I never bury Jon Jones — I don’t feel like I bury Jon Jones,” Sonnen said of his previous comments about Jones. “I really don’t. Maybe I’m a little bit rough on Jon. I don’t know about that. I mean, he’s a guy that… Man, that guy’s really good. I guess you would call that a level of respect. But it seems that every time I do a piece on this, somebody takes a small piece of it and tells Jon what I said and Jon has to go to Twitter, Jon has to type out these lines and show that he’s angry. He does this all the time and I’m like ‘I’m not really sure you heard the piece.’

“I can only imagine Jon Jones [gestures] licking the coke off his fingers to type out these lines in 160 characters — and then he wants a response. Jon, here’s my response. I appreciate you typing out lines, and I’d rather see you type lines than snort them.”

This comment from Chael Sonnen is in reference to a 2015 incident when Jon Jones tested positive for for benzoylecgonine, the primary metabolite of cocaine.

“I’m not a cocaine addict by any means or not even a frequent user,” Jones said after this ordeal. “I just made a really dumb decision and got caught with my pants down in this whole situation.”

What do you think of this comment from Chael Sonnen? How do you think Jon Jones will respond?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 8/29/2019.

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