Make no bones about it, Jon Jones is rocking the MMA world! The youngest fighter ever to hold a UFC
title, Jon Jones is not about to let go of it.
Born on July 19, 1987, Jones got his start in high school where he won the state championship in wrestlng.
He went on to win a national JUCO championship at Iowa Central Community College as well. The Criminal Justice major
dropped out of college in pursuit of a career in MMA and...what a career it turned out to be!
With an impressive record of 6-0, he stood undefeated early on in his professional career. The
UFC took and asked him to fight as a replacement for Tomasz Drwal in UFC 87.
With only a two week notice, Jon Jones stepped up to the plate and into the ring on August 9, 2008
where he faced off with Brazilian Martial Artists, Andre Gusmao. Although Jones was the underdog by far,
he put his skills into action and proved the predictions wrong. Spinning back kicks, spinning elbows and
impressive takedowns, all led to his victory via unanimous decision.
And that was just the beginning! Taking on Stephan Bonnar at UFC 94
in January of 2009,
the MMA world was questioning his ability to win this one. Afterall, when you go up against a fighter with
nicknames such as American Psycho and Iron Chin, it does make one skeptical.
But again, Jones would use his unorthodox striking skills along with his wrestling talents to wrap
up yet another win by unanimous decision.
UFC 100 was held on July 11, 2009 in Las Vegas. It would be Jones' third UFC fight and was against Irish
wrestler, Jake O'Brien. Two minutes and fourty three seconds into the second round, Jon had chalked up yet
another impressive UFC win when after a guillotine choke, O'Brien tapped out then briefly fell unconscious.
With a new four-fight UFC contract now intact, Jones fought Matt Hamill at the Ultimate Fighter:
Heavyweights Finale in December of 2009. The event would prove to be quite contraversial.
Deaf medal winning Greco-wrestler and fellow Light Heavyweight, Matt Hamill was Jones' opponent for
the bout. The trouble all began when Jones, who was dominating the fight, gave a round of multiple elbows which
he was orginally penalized for by a point. But when Hamill was unable to continue on and the injuries were further
investigated, Jones was disqualified after an instant replay revealed Hammil's nose was already bloody and
cut when Jones was delivery yet more elbows. It was the first time instant replay was enacted in Navada and
the whole incident drew attention both for and against Jones.
Next up was Brandon Vera at UFC Live on March 21, 2010. Vera was yet another opponent with a heavy
wrestling background. Again, Jon Jones delivered the by now infamous elbow and followed up with punches. Vera's
face was broken in three places and Jones won the fight by KO in round two. He also won the "Knockout of the Night Award".
By now, Jones was becomming a sensation. He defeated IFL Light Heavyweight Champion Vladimir Matyushenko
by TKO early in the fight in August of 2010 at UFC Live: Jones vs. Matyushenko.
Having earned his spot on UFC President Dana White's list (the good list, that is), Jones was promised "a
huge step-up in the competition". White praised Jones saying, "...He's smart, good looking and bad-ass.
He's going to make a lot of money -- this kid is going to do very well."
And...Dana White was right. Jones continued to do very well and...he made a lot of money too!
Jones' wish was White's command. When Bones stated he wanted a "top-three opponent" for his next
fight, that is what he got. He would face off with undefeated Ultimate Fighter winner Ryan Bader who
had just won over Antônio Rogério Nogueira. It took place at UFC 126 in February of 2011. Again, Jones
proved to be the baddest man in the ring and defeated Bader via guillotine choke in the second round
causing Bader to tap out.
It just so happened that Jones' training partner, Rashad Evans, suffered a knee injury and was unable
to fight agains the UFC Light Heavyweight Champ, Mauricio "Shogun" Rua. Guess who would take his place?
It was all on the line as Jon Jones entered the octagon on March 19, 2011 at UFC 128. Jones came on
strong early on and dominated the first 3 rounds. He had managed a flying knee right off which injured Shogun
and put him at a disadvantage for the remainder of the fight which would only be until Jones got in a knee
to the heead and a body shot which took Evans to his knees. The fight was called and Jones was declared the
newest and youngest ever Light Heavyweight Champion of the UFC.
Jones' first title defense was against former Light Heavyweight title holder Quinton "Rampage" Jackson
at UFC 135 on September 24, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. It was early in the fourth round when Jones submitted
Jackson by rear naked choke.
Japanese-Brazilian MMA fighter, Lyoto Machida, went after the title at UFC 140 that December but
Jones was not having it. A standing guillotine in the second round sent Machida to the ground rendering
him unconscious and Jones had defended his reign once again.
For some time Jones vs.
had been in the works. Set matches had been cancelled twice.
Rashad was once a team mate and friend but that had all changed. On April 21, 2012 at UFC 145 in Atlanta, Georgia,
the two declared war in a highly anticipated duel between the two. Although it took five rounds to do so, Jones
again held on to his title and remains to date, the youngest UFC title holder ever.
Jon Jones trains at Greg Jackson's gym in Albuquerque, New Mexico where Rashad Evans and Georges St-Pierre
have also trained. He has a fiancee, Melissa, and three daughters. His two brothers play pro football.
Jones is proud to profess his Christianity
and is well known for his act of courage when he chased down a man who robbed and elderly woman.
How long will this determined and abled, history holder clutch to his title? Many believe it very well
may be for a very, very long time.
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