I guess some of us are just visionaries, and others don’t see reality until it’s elbowing them in the face. Rogan was wrong about the Machida Era, but that’s a knock on Rogan, not a knock on fans who know this is the Jones Era. Guess who didn’t buy the Machida Era hype. No really, guess. I mean besides me (and I am a Machida fan). Jon fucking Jones didn’t buy it.
"I think Machida is getting a lot of hype, and I know he has lots of big wins over a lot of big fighters, and a lot of experience over me. I don't think he's Christ; I think he's very beatable. They're looking at him and his karate like he's Bruce Lee. He's not Bruce Lee...I honestly believe that a great Muay Thai champion will beat a great karate fighter any day; it's been proven on lots of occasions.
If Machida has (the belt) by the time I get to that level, I'll be ready for him. I'll have a lot of game planning and a lot of strategy ready. I want to be that greater Muay Thai fighter to beat a great karate champion. I don't think Rashad Evans came with any type of game plan, but to look really cool or look really fancy, dancing around in pretty footwork stances. He really didn't come up with any way to beat him. I didn't see any of his strengths. I didn't see any takedown attempts or any straight right hands that are always good against southpaws or anything. He was just out there looking flashy.
I'm going to go out there and pull the trigger if I ever get to fight Machida...I know I have a lot of time before I get to that level of fighting him, but when I do, I definitely won't be nervous or intimidated by him at all, and (I'll be) ready to fight him."
(Didn't know how cocky this kid really is, did you? Surprised? I'm not. I have been following Jones since he first got signed by the UFC. I remember his interviews from back then and how he knew he was going to be the champ for sure. How's that for not being phony? Do your homework.)
This is the part that cracks me up. Some of you took a look at this stare-down and thought ooOO ("Oh yeah, Rampage can KHTFO!") I took a look at this and thought ooOO ("LOL! Rampage's fans and Jones Deniers/Haters think there's a chance Rampage doesn't get TKOed or Submitted. Poor, dumb bastards.")
There are basically 6 more heroes for the Jones deniers and Jones haters to latch onto. I’ll do all the heavy lifting for you guys. Let's start with the guy who gets the next shot, Evans. IF, and I think it's a huge "if", Evans does actually take the fight, here is how it plays out: Apollo Creed vs Ivan Drago. Let me go ahead and prepare you:
Round 1: Rashad bounces around like Clay Guida on coke. You’ll hear a lot about his footwork and how great he looks and he might even slip in range and land a good shot or two. "He’s got Jones completely flummoxed…" Bloody Elbow will be entering the most sustained, collective orgasm since its inception. The Live Commentary and Results section will be a thing of beauty in the ecstasy flowing at 300 posts per second during the first 3 minutes of this fight. And then, near the end of the first round… let’s call it 30 seconds left, Jones will cut off the cage, grab Rashad, and toss him to the mat impressively, landing a few solid shots and busting him up good. Think: blood. Round will end.
Round 2: Rashad knows the end is near, goes for broke, manages to land some nice shots on Jones but gets slammed to the mat and pounded into a TKO. Let’s call it 2 minutes 45 seconds into the Round 2. Basically, watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KEtJ0GiOp64;t=5m3s
After that, your heroes will number 5 (although a few of you will complain that Jones was shanking Evans in the eyes with sharp sticks, biting his ears, and whatever other fantasies will help you cope with the reality that Jones cannot lose at 205 for another 4 to 6 years.). I’ll do all the heavy lifting for the Jones Deniers (The Flat Earthers thank you for making them look sane) and the Jones Haters. Here:
1. Machida — OMFG he’s so unorthodox in his striking, he is going to confuse Jones. Styles make fights and blah blah black sheep have you any bullshit? He had no answer for Rua, do you people really believe he’ll have an answer for Jones’ reach? No, not the 84 inches of fist in your face -- that's nothing. I'm talking about the long leg jabs. Measure that reach, someone — that’s the reach destroying the game plans of the top fighters, not his hands in their face from the next zipcode over.
2. Healthy Rua! No force on Earth can stop Healthy Rua! Just go away. Jones didn’t only break Rua’s body. He broke his mind. Rua tapped out to strikes. He’s going to get to watch a couple of more Jones fights before he gets a second chance — you really think that’s going to improve his confidence?
3. Thiago Silva! Here’s a guy who can beat anyone in the 205 division, provided he’s on enough juice, right? Jones by TKO round 2.
4. Phil Davis. OK, this will the be the first guy without an ounce of quit in him whom Jones will face. He might take Jones he distance and only lose 50-44, 50-45, 50-43. I give him a real chance to beat Jones… Jones’ streak of finishes, that is.
5. Gustafsomethingorother. Choke out, round 1. Next.
Look, by 2016, it's likely Jones will have taken enough damage to affect his skills, and some new generation athlete who, in another age would be playing defensive end for the Steelers, will arrive, cut to 205, and do to Jones what he does to the athletes currently in MMA. Jim Brown was a man playing against boys in the 50s and 60s. That same caliber of athlete wouldn't make the team at most Div I SEC schools today. Population growth, opportunity, sports science, biology -- the advances are too much. Your heroes from yesteryear wouldn't. Make. The. Team. Today. Jack Lambert, the greatest football player of all time, time-warped in his prime to 2011, would be hospitalized in his first play from scrimmage. He wouldn't be able to start for a little league team. That hurts me to say. But it's reality. Jones is one of the first of his kind in MMA. His kind will be the norm in 10 years. People will look back and realize he wasn't the greatest ever -- just the first of a new generation.
So, this is the Jon Jones Era, people. But that Era will only last til he's about 30, so take heart, haters. I'll only be rubbing your face in it for a few more years. Or until I get banned again.
I'll leave you all with this:
Jon Jones has finished 12 people in 41 months. He averages finishing someone every 3.4 months since he started fighting.