Over hyped, underestimated and naturally blessed; all accolades that have followed the name of Jon Jones throughout his UFC career up to this point. Defying the odds, he has become the youngest champion in UFC history, disposing of former champions and superstars in his way.
Claiming the throne in March of this year by beating Shogun Rua in to a heaping mess, he then went on to submit Rampage Jackson this past September at UFC 135 (he is the only man to stop Jackson inside the octagon). The test of Lyoto Machida stands in his way this weekend but is it a test at all?
Striking, wrestling and submissions are areas that “Bones” has shown how versatile and creative he can be when choosing an attack. Whether he is firing spinning back kicks or jumping side kicks or German suplexing opponents, he is as calm on the ground and can work the guillotine or RNC for the win. Machida will need to stay out of firing range but look for the perfect time to counter strike if he looks to stand a chance this weekend.
Away from the canvas and into the limelight, Jones is enjoying the success any superstar could want at this point in their career. Whether he is dancing with Urijah Faber for FORM Athletics or crushing actors in Bud Light commercials, he is having fun and everyone knows him; the MMA champion is in the same position Chuck Liddell was during his title reign and we saw what fame did to his focus.
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Announced today that Jones is nominated for ESPN’s Most Awesomest Dude of the Year 2011, his notoriety is spreading like fire. Could winning the belt so young, defending it decisively the first time and buzz sawing his way through the 205 lb division be a distraction for him going into Toronto? At this point, probably not but if he is successful in another defense the problems could form.
Talent and technique will help defeat any man in front of you but if you become your own worst enemy, with lavish cars, parties and being comfortable as people calling you the “Michael Jordan of MMA” your test becomes not who you can beat in a fight but what you allow to defeat you in life. The script on his chest read, “For I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” Philippians 4:13, perhaps he should pay more heed to “Pride cometh before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall” Proverbs 16:18.
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