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Jon Jones: Opponent switch -- not ring rust -- affected performance at UFC 197, would've beat up Daniel Cormier 'pretty good'

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Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports

Jon Jones may have looked rusty and not been his usual dominant self during his interim title fight against Ovince Saint Preux in the main event of UFC 197 last night (Sat., April 23, 2016) in Las Vegas, Nevada; but he still feels he could have defeated Daniel Cormier at the pay-per-view (PPV) event.

That's what he declared during the UFC 197 post-fight presser (see it again here) as he went on to say the last-minute switch in foes stifled his gameplan and performance a bit.

His words:

"I think it was more the switch of opponent. If you've been following my career, you know how big I'm into studying. I'm huge into studying. Me and my team, that's what we do. It's why I'm so confident going into my fights because I know what I'm getting into. Tonight, Ovince just threw a completely different thing than what I had prepared for. I'm going to say it was more the switch of opponents than ring rust. I was attacking, but not as much as I'd like."

Watch Jon's unanimous decision win here.

As far as how he would have fared against his original foe, Daniel Cormier, Jones is more than confident he would have beaten him pretty good, as his plan of attack was already primed for "DC."

"I would have beat him up pretty good because I am tuned up to be fighting Daniel Cormier. All my technique, my angles, my ideas, I've been working for Daniel Cormier for over seven months. I believe I could beat Daniel Cormier right now. For sure and I'm going to prove that as soon as possible. I feel like I've gotten a lot better. I think you guys will see that when I fight DC. Like I keep saying, I have been working so hard to beat DC. You guys will see that."

UFC president Dana White, however, disagrees.

Nevertheless, Jon will get a chance to prove he is more than ready to take on and defeat Cormier a second time, as the two will likely make a headlining appearance at UFC 200 on July 9, 2016, as far as "DC" gets the clearance from his doctor following his latest injury.

And the talented duo can thank Conor McGregor's refusal to play the game for the chance to take part in the monumental event should it come to pass.

For complete UFC 197: "Jones vs. Saint Preux" results, including play-by-play updates and much more, click here and here.