UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones is in the spotlight this weekend for his title defense against Lyoto Machida and a win would complete a great 2011. Regardless of the result at Saturday's UFC 140, ESPN SportsNation is giving fans the opportunity to cement his status for what he's done.
The popular show has named Jones one of eight finalists in their second-annual "Awesomest Dude Of The Year" contest, a bracket where online voting decides who moves onto the next round. Jones is the only MMA representative and fans can vote exclusively on Facebook for who they think should move on.
Jones is paired up against someone that watches him frequently in big MMA fan, actor and WWE talent Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Jared Allen and Tim Tebow from the NFL, Kevin Durant and Blake Griffin from the NBA, extreme sports star Travis Pastrana and women's soccer player Hope Solo are also in the tourney. (Yes, Solo is nominated for 'Awesomest Dude'). Over 270,000 votes were collected for 2010 winner and soccer star Landon Donovan.
Jones is 3-0 so far in the calendar year with wins over Ryan Bader, Mauricio Rua and Quinton Jackson. A victory over Machida Saturday would give Jones wins over three former UFC champions in one year, which would be a first.