Jon Jones won his last fight, and he’s already thinking about his next one. He and the new middleweight champion of the UFC, Israel Adesanya, have been feuding over social media for months now. Jones went out of his way to give Adesanya a warning. Here’s an overview of their feud and what might happen if they ever fight.
How it started
What started as simple discussions of which fighters they want to fight next quickly turned into one of the biggest feuds of the year. After defeating the legendary former champion Anderson Silva, Adesanya said that he wanted to eventually fight Jones. In response, Jones said that among other things, he’d make Adesanya call him “daddy” if they ever fought, according to MMAjunkie.
Adesanya, who also said at other times that he admired Jones, said that Jones only wanted to fight him because Jones was jealous of what Adesanya has achieved. As MMAjunkie mentioned, Adesanya thinks that Jones sees himself in Adesanya. Unlike Jones though, Adesanya says that he hasn’t ruined his life and his image with steroid abuse and a DUI.
Both men are skinny and tall fighters with practically undefeated MMA records. Jones, however, lost an endorsement deal with Nike after a DUI incident. Jones would later lose his title twice after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
In one of his tweets Jones warns that he sees Adesanya “sipping his own Kool-Aid.” As someone who has climbed the UFC food chain, Jones knows a thing or two about the mindset it takes to be a champion.
Adesanya meanwhile has simply been winning fights and not causing trouble outside of the octagon. In fact, Adesanya’s coach says that if Adesanya did anything similar to what Jones did, then he and the rest of Adesanya’s team would beat Adesanya up themselves.
Will Jon Jones and Israel Adesanya fight?
Like ESPN mentioned, Adesanya isn’t phased by Jon Jones’s trash talk. Many of Jones’s opponents were middleweights, much like Adesanya is. Some fans think that Jones only won those fights because they were smaller men, as Jones is in the light heavyweight division.
Adesanya’s plans, according to ESPN, is to keep fighting at middleweight and to keep beating the men in his division, such as Paulo Costa or Yoel Romero.
But Adesanya does want to eventually fight Jones, but only when Adesanya is ready to challenge the bigger man. Adesanya said that he wants to fight Jones at Raiders Stadium in Las Vegas sometime in 2021. Adesanya called for this date because Adesanya is relatively new to the UFC and he wants more time to train and to evolve as a fighter.
In response, Jones made fun of Adesanya, calling him, among other things, a nerd. Jones said that he doesn’t need to wait until 2021 to be confident enough to fight and that by then, Jones will have moved up to the heavyweight division. However, this isn’t the first time that Jones has talked about moving up to heavyweight, and he still hasn’t done it yet.
How will this fight go?
The odds are stacked against Adesanya if this fight ever happens. Sure, he effortlessly knocked out Robert Whittaker to become the middleweight champion of the world, but Jon Jones is a different beast.
Jones is a great wrestler, and although Adesanya has beaten wrestlers before, Jones is not only larger, but also more skilled at wrestling than Adesanya or any of his opponents are.
Even Daniel Cormier, someone who hates Jones, says that Adesanya is simply too small to fight Jones. Indeed, the first betting odds for this potential fight has already been released, and Adesanya is a massive underdog.
Odds aside, one thing that can’t be known is just how much Adesanya can improve his game in two years. In less than two years, he went from joining the UFC to winning the title. Such a fast title run is very rare and Conor McGregor is a fighter who’s done something similar. If Adesanya keeps winning and improving, then he has a good chance against Jones.