Jon Jones is fed up with answering questions about Rashad Evans.
Evans was originally scheduled to face Rua on the March 19 event in Newark, N.J., but was forced out of the light heavyweight title bout due to a knee injury. Jones replaced him as Rua’s opponent.
Jones has been asked countless times about Evans and if they’d fight each other leading up to next weekend’s match up, and he’s done discussing it.
“I want to make it clear to other reporters that I absolutely hate when people mention Rashad Evans, especially throughout this training camp,” Jones said on Wednesday.
“He’s a friend of mine, but I’m fighting Mauricio ‘Shogun,’ one of the best fighters that’s been around for a long time. For people to even be mentioning Rashad Evans right now I think is ludicrous.
“Rashad is not in my mind. He’s not in my being. He has absolutely zero to do with my heart and who I am right now,” added Jones.
“Right now, it’s me vs. Jon Jones, and right now I’m beating all the weakness out of myself. I’m beating all the give-up out of myself. I’m beating the lack of cardio. I’m beating the lack of confidence – any sign of weakness that’s within my heart right now, I’m getting rid of it. And the fact that people are bringing up Rashad almost angers me. Rashad has nothing to do with Shogun, and I think from here on out I won’t even answer a question about Rashad.”
There’s no beef between Jones and Evans, Jones simply wants the focus to remain on the fight at hand.
He admitted helping Evans prepare for Rua will benefit him in the fight with Shogun.
“Absolutely. Yes, I think that will help me out a lot. I’ve been watching a lot of Shogun’s fights and I see a lot of tendencies and a lot of things that he’s been doing since his Pride days. In the jiu-jitsu department, I think his bottom-game and his striking game I see a lot of tendencies.
“I was preparing Rashad and mimicking Shogun between his stance, his steps, the punches and kicks that he throws the most, the hand that he uses the most, and I think it’s going to help me out a lot.”
Jones has an array of coaches and training partners that’s helped him prepare to fight for the world title, Rashad Evans is just one of them.
“Rashad is my friend and he’s my boy, but I definitely won’t be thinking about Rashad at all throughout this fight,” said Jones. “If anyone I’ll be bringing with me is God. I will be bringing God with me, and I’ll be bringing the faces and images of all my training partners and coaches. I’ll draw from all of them. It’s true you’re only as good as those you are around, and Rashad being one of them, but I have a lot of people outside of him that I can draw energy and power from.”