After the final bell rang on the UFC 197 main event bout between Jon Jones and Ovince Saint Preux, an interesting conversation was overheard between the interim champ's coaches from the corner-audio of the pay-per-view.
"He did all right coach," Jones' wrestling coach Israel Martinez said (transcribed by MMAjunkie). Greg Jackson then brought up the heavy lifting that Jones has been doing for this fight as a reason for his somewhat lackluster performance.
"Powerlifting’s a problem," Jackson said. "He gasses. I only want to do an I-told-you-so dance right now."
Jones boasted a new physique during his bout, and posted several clips of his feats in the weight room (such as deadlifting 585 lbs) during the lead up to the match. Quite a few fans expressed concern on what it could do with his cardio, and based on the candid statement above, it seems like Jackson did as well.
While some people attribute Jones' performance to just ring rust from the layoff, his rival in Daniel Cormier seems to think it had a lot to do with powerlifting as well.
"He looked a lot bigger, but he also looked a lot slower. He looked like he tired a little faster," Cormier said on the MMA Hour.
"I think this is Jon, this is the new Jon, this is Jon Jones with all the muscle," he said. "This is Jon Jones that likes to lift weights. The Jon Jones who's a big guy, cutting weight and can't rehyrdate the old way under USADA rules. This is Jon Jones in the new UFC, the real world today. So when we fight in July he's going to look the same."
"He's going to have questions, and he's going to question himself, and you could see him processing things inside the cage. He'll go home now and he'll wonder why (he) looked like that," he said. "Guess what bud, that's who you are now! That's how he's going to look in July when I'm kicking his ass."
Watch the rest of DC's interview above (starting at the 37:30 mark):