Interim titleholder Jon Jones‘ last win as the undisputed light heavyweight champion was over Daniel Cormier at UFC 182 in January 2015. He was scheduled to defend his belt for a record-setting ninth time against Anthony Johnson at UFC 187, but was stripped of the title and suspended by the UFC three weeks before the event for his involvement in a hit-and-run incident.
In his absence, Cormier won the vacant belt and defended it. Jones and Cormier were expected to rematch at UFC 197, but an injury forced “DC” out of the fight. Jones instead faced Ovince Saint Preux on April 23 for the interim 205-pound title. The rematch with Cormier was rescheduled for the UFC 200 fight card.
Jones expects to reclaim his title by defeating Cormier a second time and believes “DC” is the second best light heavyweight in the world.
“I thought DC’s last two fights were great. They were really good. He had a great game plan against Anthony Johnson. He fought a drawn-out war against Alexander Gustafsson. He did great. I don’t question DC’s ability to beat everyone else. He’ll just never beat me,” Jones said during a UFC 200 press conference in New York on Wednesday.
“Outside of me, he’s the next best thing. He can beat these other guys. He can’t beat me,” added Jones. “He can beat these other guys all day, but he’s not beating me.”
Jones considers Cormier nothing more than a wrestler that’s learned how to throw punches.
“I’m a complete martial artist verses a wrestler. DC is a wrestler that’s learned how to punch. I’m a complete martial artist,” he said. “This isn’t a wrestling match.”
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