Jon Jones has gone from rising your prospect to light heavyweight champion in no time.
Saturday night, “Bones” makes his second title defense of the year when he meets Lyoto Machida in the main event of UFC 140: Jones vs. Machida. In his last defense Jones stopped former champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson via submission.
After taking the title from Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, the bout with Machida will mark the third time Jones has faced a UFC champion, as Rua defeated “The Dragon” for the UFC 205-pound divisional title. Being in this new-found role of hunted isn’t something that is of concern to Jones.
“I’m definitely comfortable with it. Where they can all watch and try to come up with a strategy for what they need to do, I’m watching the one that’s in front of me and becoming obsessed with his style and everything about that guy,” said Jones, in a recent interview with the UFC’s website. “I think that target being on my back is only gonna force me to becoming better.”
Jones has long wanted to face Machida, as he was an interested observer of his style early in his career. That, however, is also why Jones feels like he will be successful against the karate student.
“I don’t think he’s adjusted his game too much,” Jones said. “No matter who he fights against, it’s nearly impossible for him to truly change his style for a certain fighter. The Lyoto Machida that fought ‘Shogun,’ the Lyoto Machida that lost to ‘Rampage,’ the great Lyoto Machida that originally came to the UFC, I’ve been studying his fights repeatedly, and it’s the same exact thing.”
Fans can catch the fight on PPV when it starts Saturday night at 9:00 PM EST.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC
MMA Training Take: If “Bones” finishes Machida, this could go down as one of the greatest years in MMA history. Jones has the potential to be the next Anderson Silva if he continues improving and pushing himself to new heights.