Following an announcement that Jon Jones would take on Glover Teixeira (22-2) on February 1st at the Super Bowl weekend event, UFC officials quickly pulled a u-turn stating that the fight was now more likely to happen later on in the year and that the super bowl weekend date was never a “done deal”.
Now UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones (19-1, pictured) has shared why the fight has been pushing back, with the current champion saying he felt he was rushing into his next fight a little to quickly after the five round war with Alexander Gustafsson (15-2) at UFC 165.
Jones told Newsday;
“It was just a little too close. I felt like I was rushing a bit, and I talked to my team and everyone suggested I hold off for another month and a half.”
Following the bout with Gustafsson, in which both men suffered a great deal of damage, there were fears that Jones could be kept on the shelf for an extended amount of time. However, medical examinations revealed that there were no serious injuries for either fighter and it was now simply a case of resting up and allowing their wounds to heal up naturally.
A foot injury suffered during the bout, perhaps stemming from a broken toe in his fight with Chael Sonnen (29-13-1) back in April, is still giving the champion some issues, but he insists that he is now feeling great and that he expects the experience of going through such a gruelling battle should pay dividends further down the line.
“My foot is not 100 percent, but my face and my body feels great,” Jones said. “I felt like it was the biggest win of my career because of hard fought it was. I felt like it was a huge blessing. I’ve always asked for a dogfight. I’ve always looked for a legitimate fight and I got it and it feels good to have that under my belt now. Hopefully in the future I can get back to more dominating ways.”
With Jones and Teixeira now expected to square off in March, Jones was asked whether or not he feels he will be ready by then for the bout. While the twenty-six year old champion seemed confident of being healthy in time, a man who has already defended his title six times in a little less than two years, won’t be rushed into his next fight.
“I hope so, I hope so. That last fight was a lot. So, I think the time is appropriate. I’m a young guy, and I don’t think it’s really necessary to rush anything.”
With the victory over Gustafsson, the current champion set a new record for most title defences in UFC light heavyweight history with six straight successful defences, breaking the previous record of five that he shared with Tito Ortiz (16-11-1). Jones now seems set on extending the record, ahead of a rumoured move up to heavyweight in the future.