Anthony Johnson Accepts That Jon Jones Fight Won’t Happen

Anthony ‘Rumble’ Johnson has been an absolute monster since moving up to the UFC’s 205-pound division, and now currently sits at the No. 1-ranked position in the light heavyweight rankings.

Once upon a time ‘Rumble’ was scheduled to take on the then-reigning 205-pound kingpin Jon ‘Bones’ Jones in the main event of UFC 187, however, an unfortunate hit-and-run incident would force Jones out of the contest and into a spiral of legal troubles resulting in his one-year hiatus from the sport.

Jones has once again landed himself in hot water, as he was flagged for the use of banned substances by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) ahead of his scheduled clash with hated rival Daniel Cormier at UFC 200.

Now Jones is looking at up to a two-year suspension from the sport, putting his mixed martial arts (MMA) career in question. One of the most called for match-ups in the 205-pound weight clash was a throwdown between the heavy-hitting Johnson and the talented Jones, but it’s looking more and more like fight fans will never get to see the dream matchup.

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RumbleSmashesBader2In a recent interview with ESPN, ‘Rumble’ stated that he has moved on from the potential fight with ‘Bones’, saying it’s just not in the cards anymore:

“It’s just not gonna happen — at this point, I know it’s not gonna happen,” Johnson said. “It is what it is. I’m moving forward. Everybody is moving forward. I’m still shooting high and trying to do what I can in this sport.

I’m not focused on Jon anymore. And I can tell you Daniel Cormier, Glover — they’re not focused on Jon, either. Nobody in this division is focused on Jon anymore. That’s a fact.”

While Johnson now has his eyes set on what is really important, he did admit that he felt a bit of disappointment after learning that Jones was flagged by USADA just two days out from UFC 200, drastically slimming the possibility that he’ll ever get the opportunity to meet Jones inside of the Octagon:

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“When the UFC 200 stuff first happened, I was just in shock with everything,” Johnson said. “Maybe for a couple of days or a week or two, I was just extremely disappointed.

I was like, ‘Damn, this is just really not gonna happen.’ I was looking forward to it just as much as anyone was. So, it does disappoint me.

I’m not mad at Jon. It doesn’t affect me, but I feel bad for the man, you know? I wish the best for everybody. I wish he would have made a smarter decision.

If he did take those estrogen blockers or whatever, I wish he was smarter than that. But Jon is his own man. It is what it is. It’s on Jon, not me.”

GloverRumble2‘Rumble’ has a tall order ahead of him next week, as he takes on No. 2-ranked Glover Teixeira in the co-main event of UFC 202. Johnson admitted that he doesn’t plan on staying in the sport of MMA long, but simply wants to get paid and get out:

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“I ain’t trying to fight until I’m 35,” Johnson said. “I’m trying to make my money and go on to something different — do bigger and better things with my life.

Hell, I don’t want to get punched in the head that damn much. I’ve got other things I want to do.”

“This is going to be a fun fight,” Johnson said. “This is a fun fight for me and the fans. Glover is a brawler.”

Johnson will meet Teixeira in the co-main event of UFC 202 live on pay-per-view (PPV), from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 20, 2016.