Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jones ruled the octagon during his reign at the top. He’s widely considered to be the best mixed martial artist of all time and has essentially gone unbeaten with the only blemish on his record coming by way of disqualification, a ruling that company president Dana White tried to overturn but failed.
Cejudo, a former two-division king, has been gearing for his return to action after announcing his retirement from the sport following his last outing against Dominick Cruz in May 2020. During his time off from competition, “Triple C” managed to stay relevant through an expanded presence on social media.
He has been coaching other athletes, including Jones who joined forces with Cejudo at Fight Ready in Scottsdale, Arizona last November.
In a recent video uploaded to his YouTube channel, Cejudo pinned the blame on Miocic for the delay in Jones’ comeback.
“Jon is ready, Jon has that fire that he had once again,” he said (ht GiveMeSport). “It’s really come down to Stipe Miocic. If he’s gonna continue to keep fighting fires, or fight. I commend him for doing things like that but this is also the fight game and people do want the fight.
“If Stipe is willing to say hey man, this is the month I want to get going, then Jon will oblige and sign even though Jon is the A-side.
“Anything less than Jon Jones fighting for a belt is a slap in the face. Him fighting Curtis Blaydes or anyone along the line is a slap in the face to Jon Jones.
“Hate him or love him, he is the greatest of all time.”
Jones Trained With Cejudo After Being Banned From JacksonWink
Following Jones’ domestic violence arrest in Sep. 2021, his longtime coach, Mike Winkeljohn, declared that Jones was banned from entering JacksonWink MMA, Jones’ longtime home gym in Albuquerque.
With Jones preparing for a new challenge at heavyweight, many wondered where he would go next after the suspension. He ended up linking with Cejudo, who says their partnership works well for both.
“We think outside the box, so it’s different for us. We’re not part of a team,” Cejudo told MMA Junkie Radio (ht MMA Junkie). “I saw the thing you guys talked about: ‘Where should he go? ATT, he should go to blah blah blah.’ No, not really.
“What you do with a guy like Jon Jones is you build a team around him. He is the team. He doesn’t need to be pushed. He needs to be tweaked. He’s already been through hell. He’s already been through the turmoil.”
Jones Has Been Preparing for His Heavyweight Debut
After a razor-thin victory over Thiago Santos in Jul. 2019, Jones took on Dominick Reyes at UFC 247 in what would turn out to be his final outing at 205 lbs in Feb. 2020. He set his sight on going up a weight class to challenge for the heavyweight gold.
While he was initially linked to a fight with the reigning king Francis Ngannou, a surgery and a public dispute between the promotion and its champion made the pairing unlikely. Jones, was then reported to take on Stipe Miocic, the former and greatest heavyweight champion in UFC history, in his first showing at the weight class.
Miocic prefers to keep a lowkey profile and does not share many updates with his fans. It remains to be seen when Jones will make his long-awaited debut at heavyweight.