UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones is currently on a hiatus from the sport, but if he plans on defending his light heavyweight belt it will be against No. 1 ranked Dominick “The Devastator” Reyes, according to UFC president Dana White.
After the UFC 252 press conference on Thursday, White spoke with “The Schmo” about Jones. He said that if Bones returns to fighting, Reyes is on the table at light heavyweight but if the champion decides to move up a weight class to heavyweight, there are a few different options.
“It depends on what he does,” the UFC president said. “Does he move up to heavyweight? If he stays at light heavyweight, he’s got to fight Reyes again. You have to see the Reyes fight again. And if he moves up to heavyweight, there’s a lot of interesting [opponents]. He could fight [Daniel] Cormier, he could fight Stipe [Miocic] depending on who wins on Saturday [during UFC 252]. He could fight Francis Ngannou. There are a lot of fun fights for him at heavyweight.”
Update, August 17: UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones has announced that he is vacating the belt. To read more about his move, tap here.
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Jones & Reyes Fought in February, Jones Won By Controversial Unanimous Decision
The Devastator and Bones met in the main event of UFC 247 in February. In one of the best light heavyweight title fights in UFC history, the two fighters went back and forth for five rounds. The match went to the judges, and they declared Bones the victor by unanimous decision (48–47, 48–47, 49–46).
However, the win came with some controversy as many viewers scored the bout in favor of the challenger. Since then, Reyes has campaigned for an instant rematch with Bones, and White is seemingly ready to make that happen. Although White didn’t give a date for a potential clash between Jones and Reyes, ESPN’s Brett Okamoto tweeted yesterday that White wanted to put on a light heavyweight title fight before the end of 2020.
Okamato tweeted, “Dana White just told me there WILL be another light heavyweight title fight before the end of 2020. He said he’s actually waiting to hear back from Jon Jones today, regarding what will happen with the division.”
A Potential Heavyweight Opponent for Jones Could Be Determined During UFC 252
Bones has shown a lot of interest in moving up to the heavyweight division. Before taking a hiatus from the UFC, Jones was actively campaigning for a fight against No. 2 ranked heavyweight Francis Ngannou.
On Saturday night, two of the best heavyweights will compete for the title, champion Stipe Miocic will fight former light heavyweight and heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier in the main event of UFC 252.
As White mentioned in the interview with The Schmo, Bones could potentially fight one of those competitors. He could also take on Ngannou, as well, depending on Saturday night’s results. View the entire UFC 252 fight card below:
Heavyweight Championship Bout: Stipe Miocic vs. Daniel Cormier
Bantamweight Bout: Sean O’Malley vs. Marlon Vera
Heavyweight Bout: Junior dos Santos vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
Bantamweight Bout: John Dodson vs. Merab Dvalishvili
Lightweight Bout: Jim Miller vs. Vinc Pichel
Women’s Strawweight Bout: Ashley Yoder vs. Livia Renata Souza
Heavyweight Bout: Chris Daukaus vs. Parker Porter
Women’s Strawweight Bout: Felice Herrig vs. Virna Jandiroba
Early Preliminary Card
Featherweight Bout: Herbert Burns vs. Daniel Pineda
Featherweight Bout: T.J Brown vs. Daniel Chavez