It's all just a little bit of history repeating itself.
At UFC 172: "Jones vs. Teixeira," which took place last night (Sat., April 26, 2014) at Baltimore Arena in Baltimore, Maryland, the king of the light heavyweight division treated us to one of his most impressive performances yet.
Jon Jones successfully defended the light heavyweight strap against Glover Teixeira, brutalizing the Brazilian over the course of five rounds. You could say that Jones fought smart and didn't take any risks; however, he proved his dominance throughout the fight by mauling his opponent and tore him apart left, right, and center (highlights here).
It could have very well been Jones' best performance yet inside the Octagon, simply because he showed that he could break down a durable opponent rather than roll right through him. "Bones" had historical showings in the past against the likes of Mauricio Rua, Lyoto Machida and Vitor Belfort, to name a few, although his battle against the Pit-trained behemoth was a carefully calculated beating in which he showed great maturity and coming of age.
With Anderson Silva and Georges St. Pierre gone for an undetermined amount of time, the New Yorker isn't just the biggest star in UFC at this present time, but he's also the most important figure in the entire sport. Without Jones, things would be pretty bleak for the organization, even though Renan Barao and Ronda Rousey seem to be on the come up.
Having said that, it's pretty obvious who "Bones" could expect as his next title challenger and it's a foe he's all too familiar with.
Alexander Gustafsson was already confirmed to get the next crack at the title, guaranteed to face the winner of last night's duel and luckily for him, he can try to avenge his UFC 165 loss to the champion. Their fight in Toronto was the best light heavyweight title fight in UFC history and some pundits would argue it was the best championship clash that has ever taken place inside the Octagon. Jones was brought into deep waters, suffering the most damage he's ever faced in his UFC tenure. It was a tussle for the ages and quite frankly, it could be the biggest rematch in light heavyweight history.
Plus, let's credit both fighters for keeping the beef alive these past couple of months, too.
But, that's not all.
The winner of "Bones" vs. "The Mauler" will have his work cut out for him once the rematch is done, since it has been rumored that UFC 173's co-main event will be a title eliminator bout pitting Daniel Cormier against Dan Henderson in Las Vegas.
Although, with Anthony Johnson entering the fold after his win against Phil Davis last night, Dana White believes "Rumble" could be a solid match up for Cormier -- provided the former Strikeforce Grand Prix winner bests Henderson.
"DC" has never shied away from expressing his true feelings about the champion, solely because the Olympian believes he has the tools and the ability to defeat the light heavyweight phenomenon. His UFC 173 Olympic counterpart, Dan Henderson, also has unfinished business when it comes to the champion, since they were supposed to meet at UFC 151 -- which was canceled after "Hendo" suffered an MCL tear in his right knee.
It's safe to say all parties involved have a bone to pick with each other and plans are still up in the air once Jones finishes duking it out against the Swede. If the champ continues to outclass his opponents and improve while doing so, he could go down as one of the most gifted athletes to ever compete in combat sports.
For complete UFC 172: "Jones vs. Teixeira" results and live fight coverage click here.