Jon Jones was involved in one of his stiffest challenges to date last Saturday night (Feb. 8, 2020) at UFC 247, as Dominick Reyes took it to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight champion for five rounds.
Despite “The Devastator’s” valiant effort, “Bones” walked away with a unanimous decision victory, earning his eleventh title defense. Still, there are some some who apparently weren’t too impressed with what they saw from “Bones,” specifically current Middleweight champion, Israel Adesanya.
“The Last Stylebender” – who was in Houston, Texas the day prior but chose to fly back to New Zealand before the bout – says he saw all he needed to see from Jones in the fight.
”I’ve seen him. I’ve seen what I needed to see,” Adesanya told Sporting News on Monday. “In the fifth round, he tried to turn it on, but he couldn’t. Compare his fifth round to my fifth round against Kelvin Gastelum; there’s a difference.”
Adesanya is referring to his classic title fight against Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 236 last year, which saw him pick up the pace in the final round, dropping Gastelum on a few occasions to insure his victory and first-ever taste of UFC gold (see it again here). For Israel, he would’ve liked to see Jones turn it up a bit more in the final round to win the bout more convincingly.
”He’s washed up. He’s done,” Adesanya continued. “His best years are behind him. He’s still great, but he’s washed up now. He wasn’t doing s—. He was winning the rounds, but it wasn’t really doing s—. He was trying, but there’s levels to this.”
Adesanya’s criticism is the perfect example of the high standards Jones says people expect of him fight after a fight. At the end of the day, though, “Bones” did what he needed to do to get the win, which was good enough to put him in the record books with 14 straight championship wins.
That being said, Jones is still the G.O.A.T until he is defeated and dethroned, and Adesanya’s comments should be expected given their brewing rivalry.