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Jon Jones feels he’s fought several better strikers than Ciryl Gane: ‘This is definitely not a kickboxing match’

UFC 239 Jones v Santos Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Jon Jones isn’t too worried about Ciryl Gane’s impressive striking acumen.

“Bones” returns for the first time in over three years when he faces Gane at UFC 285 on March 4, 2023, for the vacant Heavyweight championship. It will be a new venture for the 35-year-old all-time great, but he’s up for the challenge and doesn’t see “Bon Gamin” as anything more dangerous than some of his past obstacles.

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CHAMPIONSHIP TRILOGY! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to The O2 in London England, on Sat., March 18, 2023, with newly-minted Welterweight kingpin, Leon Edwards, running it back with former 170-pound champion, Kamaru Usman, for a third (and likely final) time. In UFC 286’s pay-per-view (PPV) co-main event, all-action Lightweight knockout artists, Justin Gaethje and Rafael Fiziev, will lock horns with the winner inching closer to a future Lightweight title shot.

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“No I don’t,” Jones quote tweeted when asked if he felt Gane was the best striker he’ll have fought. “Thiago Santos, Lyoto Machida the list goes on. I fought many guys who were nasty on their feet. Guys with very intimidating one strike knockout power. I feel pretty comfortable, and this is definitely not a kickboxing match.

“If anything I feel faster and more explosive [at Heavyweight],” he added. “Definitely have the knockout power that I didn’t have before. Wrestling is more than a few take downs, it’s a mentality. I’ll just leave it at that. No, [I’m not concerned about ring rust]. I’ve worked harder over the last three years than I ever have in my entire career. Fighting is inside of me, it’s who I am.”

When specifically looking at Jones’ wins over the likes of Brazilians, Santos and Machida, at Light Heavyweight, they were very different performances in two separate eras of Jones’ career. The Machida fight came first with Jones scoring a second-round guillotine submission at UFC 140 in Dec. 2011 in what was just Jones’ second successful title defense.

Santos was Jones’ second most recent victory, picking that one up by the only split decision victory of his illustrious 28-fight career. Jones followed up the victory with another closely contested and somewhat controversial outing via unanimous decision over Dominick Reyes.

Gane, on the other hand, has earned five of his 11-career wins via knockout or technical knockout, most recently putting away power punchers, Tai Tuivasa and Derrick Lewis.


Who at their best is the best striker?

This poll is closed

  • 42%
    Ciryl Gane
    (292 votes)
  • 7%
    Thiago Santos
    (53 votes)
  • 49%
    Lyoto Machida
    (340 votes)
685 votes total Vote Now

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 285 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6:15 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 285: “Jones vs. Gane” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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