Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) interim light heavyweight champion Jon Jones is probably the best mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter on the planet (the numbers don't lie), even if he does have to share the 205-pound title with UFC 200 rival Daniel Cormier.
So why isn't he beloved by fans?
Probably because Jones can't decide whether he's a babyface or a heel, and even when he does, he can't manage to stay in character long enough to sell the image. That's why "Bones" is left wondering about his place among the MMA fan base.
Former opponent and opposing Ultimate Fighter (TUF) coach Chael Sonnen breaks it down for Three Amigos Podcast:
"Even with that terrible performance Jon Jones just had, I don't know anybody that can beat him. As bad as he just looked, I don't know anybody that could beat him. He's that much better than the rest. We can sit around and go, ‘What a bad performance,' and it was. It was terrible. I still don't know anyone that could beat the guy. That's how good he's gotten.
He's just annoying as hell. I mean, that's the tough part about Jon. You have to deal with this level of ridiculousness. The whole thing's terrible. He comes to the ring, he hugs his entire family, which is really cool to see, but out of nowhere, he drops this bombshell after the fight that his mother had just gone through something and had just lost her leg. That's terrible and it breaks your heart, but the other part of you is going, ‘But I just saw you and your whole family there. Why is no one home with Mom?'
You know, you can't help but think that. He cuts this interview saying that this just happened like two days before, and the whole damned family is at the fight! You're just scratching your head here thinking, ‘Man, the inmates are running the asylum.' It's just a level of ridiculousness...it's insane. It was just the craziest interview. Your heart is breaking for his mom, but you're thinking, ‘Man, what are you doing in the cage? Why are you all there?'
Then he wonders why nobody can get behind him. He shows up to the press conference acting like a fool. He comes in trying to take over the press conference like everybody was supposed to be happy for him that he won. He didn't realize that they were looking at the drunken coke addict champ, with all the talent in the world, that just can't get it straight. When you have that level of arrogance, it's tough to get behind him. Then sure enough, you've got the press, ‘Ra-ra-ra-ra-ra-ra,' they're really going for it. Man, this wouldn't have happened back in my day. We'd have grabbed a guy like this in the back and straightened him out. We just would have."
It probably would have taken at least four or five guys.
Jones revealed that his mother lost her leg to diabetes shortly before his return fight at UFC 197, which came against short-notice replacement Ovince Saint Preux. "Bones" also came under fire for his performance against "OSP," which at times looked uninspired and listless.
I guess it's better than the drunken, coke-using alternative.