Jon Jones vs Shogun: Full fight at UFC 128 begins 'The Jones Era' ... or not so fast?


Let the coronation commence:

Jon Jones was crowned light heavyweight king in Newark, marking the dawn of a royal day for the rest of the 205-pound division.

It's certainly possible. He's good. Real good.

But maybe, just maybe, we are getting a little ahead of ourselves.

"Bones" blasted through light heavyweight champion Mauricio "Shogun" Rua last night at UFC 128, finishing the 2005 Pride FC Middleweight Grand Prix winner easily in less than three full rounds. It was a jaw-dropping performance just six weeks removed from Jones putting his stamp on the previously undefeated Ryan Bader.

It's not the victories that have the MMA world on fire right now, singing his praises and branding him the "future of the sport," but the manner in which he notches those victories.

Spinning back elbows and kicks, lightning fast takedowns and brutal ground and pound -- all with a silky smooth yet lethal delivery -- are just a few of the many flashy ways that Jones impresses inside the cage. But outside of it, he's also good looking, well spoken and just 23 years young.

He's the complete package ... or so it seems just 24 hours after his flawless championship-winning performance inside the Prudential Center.

His boss, UFC President Dana White, is among the many who feel that Jones is special. On the flip side, White still isn't really sure how to feel about his burgeoning box office baby.

Hear what he had to say about the haste to anoint 2011 "The Jones Era:"

"After what I saw tonight, it looks like [Jon Jones] is a mile ahead of everybody. But who knows, man? You never know in this sport…. Everybody said this is the Machida Era and everything else…. Who the hell knows? Maybe you're right. Maybe he is Lyoto Machida. Who knows? That's the thing: You don't know…. We don't know anything. That's why when everybody has their opinions on, 'Oh, this guy over there's the best,' there's only one way to find out, and that's to have them fight…. Sitting right here, right now, tonight, Jones looks like the man. It looks like he's a mile ahead of everybody…. There was a day and time when it looked like Brandon Vera was the man and he was going to annihilate everybody and possibly move up to heavyweight…. Who knows?"

Don't expect Rashad Evans -- the man with the first chance to dethrone the new king -- to bow down and kiss Jones' ring anytime soon.

"Suga" might not be able to put an end to an era before it even started, but rest assured the former champion has several reasons to try his best. More than most, actually.

Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, Machida, possibly even Randy Couture, as well as perhaps the next prodigal son, Phil Davis, all might have a little something to say about "The Jones Era," too.

Who knows for certain? Jon Jones. That's who knows.

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