Jon Jones is not just the greatest light heavyweight champion of all time. He is, quiet simply, the
greatest MMA fighter the sport has ever yet seen. Only time will tell if he is the GOAT, the Greatest
Of All Time.
The only reason he has not hit top of many pound for pound ranking tables is the presence of
Anderson Silva. Silva was the man until Jones showed up. Looking at the total package of each,
there's not much between them. Sure, Silva's a better striker but Jones is the better wrestler and
wrestling dictates where the fight happens. The real difference in assessing of both fighters is their
body of work.
Silva has been around forever. He debuted in 1997 and has amassed a 31-4 record. The last time he
lost was a DQ in 2006, which he avenged at UFC 134 in beating Yushin Okami. Silva has the greatest
record in championship fights in the UFC going 10-0, which are only part of his 14 fight win streak
since joining the company.
Prior to this Silva had drifted from promotion to promotion without really establishing himself. Sure
he’d won belts in Cage Rage and Shooto but he hardly fought the highest calibre middleweights in
In contrast to Silva, Jon Jones has been a sensation since he first taped up his hands to fight. Jones
was signed by the UFC after compiling a 6-0 record in four months. His first UFC fight was taken on
two weeks’ notice and two years later, after going 5-1 in the UFC, Jones landed a title contender
eliminator fight against Ryan Bader.
After blowing Bader aside, he was then fast tracked to a title shot after an injury forced Rashad
Evans out of his championship fight with Shogun Rua. After one of the most one sided and
devastating beatings in a title fight, Jon Jones was crowned the new UFC light-heavyweight
champion three years into his MMA career, at the tender age of 24, the youngest in the promotion’s
history. He has defended his belt against 3 former champions in style. Rampage and Evans took him
4 and 5 rounds respectively but those fights were never close. Machida is the only fighter so far to
take the fight to Jones and probably won the first round before succumbing to a guillotine in the 2nd.
Jones has stated he will transition to heavyweight by the time he’s 27. He may have to do it sooner
with the lack of quality opposition at 205lbs on the horizon. For all intents and purposes, he has
cleaned out the light heavyweight division. Dan Henderson, who has plied most of his trade at
middleweight, is the next contender. Henderson has a punchers chance but is giving up many inches
in reach and many years in age.
Jones has quoted Marianne Williams saying “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our
deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” When you watch Jon Jones fight you see a
man who realises he can truly be powerful beyond measure. Wherever a fight takes place Jones gets
the better of his opponents. He out-strikes the strikers, out wrestlers the wrestlers, he out-thinks
every fighter during every second of the fight.
Jones might be the only one not surprised by his meteoric rise. ““You could call my rise quick but to
me it wasn’t an overnight success. I’ve tried to train for every conceivable circumstance…And so
when you’ve put the time I have into achieving your goals the success doesn’t seem to have come