Whether or not the rivalry and mutual hatred between Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier is real or manufactured -- at this point there's not much reason to believe it's the latter -- the drama leading up to this weekend's UFC 182 main event has made for gripping viewing and reading. Per MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani and Bleacher Report's Jeremy Botter, the two men reportedly were involved in a backstage confrontation after the traditional staredowns, and their respective camps got involved:
I'm told following today's staredown, DC and Jones got into a verbal altercation backstage. No punches thrown but it was very heated …— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) January 2, 2015
… and they had to be separated by security. Even their respective teams got into it a bit. But again, no physical stuff at all.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) January 2, 2015
And yes, the rumors of an altercation between the Jones and Cormier camps are true. So that’s fun. Saturday can’t get here soon enough.— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) January 2, 2015
If you wanted any more evidence, ex-UFC fighter Tyson Griffin posted this video on Instagram showing the two parties yelling at each other, with Griffin clearly yelling to Jones "Why are you coming at a coach?"
If you thought it was incredibly intense now, there's still time for more chaos to go down at tomorrow evening's weigh-ins.
UPDATE: And here's another video uploaded by Mr. Griffin.
This was just before previous video. Jones clearly isn't walking toward @dc_mma but at least he chose nicer words to use unlike when he thought the cameras were off! I'm not trying to say anyone is right or wrong for anything in these videos. I'm just giving you an update on the events taking place behind the scenes. #ufc182 #ufc #fightweek #breakbones @camacho100 @rosendo_sanchez @noad_lahat @slikbxr @leandrovbteam @official_aka