Throughout the talks of a possible fight between Jon Jones and Francis Ngannou, UFC president Dana White has remained skeptical. In a conversation with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto on Thursday, White seemingly put the nail on the coffin, pinning the blame on Jones’ supposed monetary demands.
“Is Jon Jones gonna fight Francis Ngannou then try to take a run at the heavyweight title? I don’t believe that,” he said. “He’s never wanted to move to heavyweight before, and for the amount of money he’s asking for, it’s not gonna happen.
“You couldn’t be asking for a more absurd amount of money at a worst time.”
It didn’t take too long for Jones to fire back with a response. Right off the bat, he denied asking for any pay bump.
It’s interesting to just sit here and watch your boss lie to the camera like this. We never discussed any increase in pay. Immediately the conversation was that I already made enough. I never made a number offer. https://t.co/YYx4FMHeIs— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020
In the next series of tweets, “Bones” went on to call out his boss for making such claims.
If you’re not going to change my contract for the heavyweight move, at least have the decency to be honest with the fans.— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020
I was over the situation, but I’m not gonna sit back and allow Dana to lie to the fans. I never asked for an absurd amount of money. That’s bullshit— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020
Absolute bullshit— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020
If anything, it was Ngannou who went on record to broach the idea of a pay increase. But given White’s tone, it looks like this matchup has been put to bed, at least for the time being.
UPDATE: Jones has sent out more tweets on the topic.
I’m not going to give up hope the way I’m taking this whole thing is @Ufc don’t want to budget the Jon Jones heavyweight move up right now. They should’ve just said that, lying on me and saying I asked for too much it’s just unfair. That was unnecessary.— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020
You already let me down a bit by shutting down this Francis Mega fight, don’t add salt to the wound by telling the fans something that’s not the truth.— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020
if you’re wondering I’m not fighting with Ufc. I’m not mad at Dana or beefing. Just surprised he went that route. I said my piece, I’m over it— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 29, 2020