Ex-MMA champ sees Jon Jones only needing ‘two and a half minutes’ to finish Alex Pereira in potential fight

Ex-MMA champion Ben Askren sees Jon Jones finishing Alex Pereira in 'Two and a Half Minutes'

Ben Askren expects Jon Jones to make quick work of Alex Pereira if the two ever tussle inside the Octagon.

Following Pereira’s sensational first-round knockout of Jamahal Hill at UFC 300, ‘Bones’ took to social media to gauge interest in a potential superfight between himself and the reigning 205-pound champ. Needless to say, fans exploded with excitement online and pundits immediately began debating who would come out on top in the potential champion vs. champion clash.

Jon Jones
Jon Jones

Speaking with UFC Hall of Famer Daniel Cormier, former Bellator MMA and ONE world champion Ben Askren suggested that Pereira wouldn’t last much longer against Jones than Ciryl Gane did.

“People want to see him have the ability to stop takedowns, because of you can’t stop takedowns [from] Jon Jones, he’s going to take you down and submit you,” Askren said on an episode of Funky & Champ.

“We saw Pereira get taken down by [Israel] Adesanya and he was kept down for, actually, a significant portion of time. And it is kind of wild that we have this guy Pereira, and there’s no doubt he’s making his mark as, possibly, one of the best ever if he keeps winning, yet [there] are questions about his wrestling. Like, how would he do against good wrestling? And we don’t know because somehow Jamahal Hill didn’t try a takedown, [Jiri] Prochazka didn’t try a takedown, [Jan] Blachowicz actually did take him down and keep him down for a round, Strickland didn’t try a takedown. … Like, these guys, they don’t try takedowns.

“He’s won all of these fights … and as he’s fought Sean Strickland and on, besides one round with Jan — and Jan’s not really a wrestler, he possesses some skills but he’s not really a wrestler. [Pereira] has still not fought a wrestler. So we still have all of these questions. So if he fights Jon Jones, I think there’s a chance it’s over in like two and a half minutes. I mean, look what Jon did to Ciryl Gane. He’s a large man, he’s a high-level wrestler, he’s got great grappling skills. Yeah, I think there’s a possibility of that for sure” (h/t MMA Fighting).

Jones secured a quick two-minute submission victory over Gane at UFC 285 to claim the vacant heavyweight title.

READ MORE:  Jon Jones is tired of being 'begged' to fight Tom Aspinall: 'I'm done with the distractions'
Jon Jones

‘Bones’ was expected to defend the title against the division’s consensus GOAT Stipe Miocic in November, but a pectoral injury forced him to bow out of the bout.

Askren believes Jon Jones needs to fight Tom Aspinall before Alex Pereira

In the meantime, the UFC has crowned an interim champion in Tom Aspinall after the UK-based star scored a 69-second KO against Sergei Pavlovich inside the world’s most famous arena.

Aspinall KO's Pavlovich

Traditionally, the undisputed champion would unify his belt with that of the interim titleholder upon their return. Unfortunately, that won’t be the case this time around as both Jones and the UFC have remained adamant that ‘Bones’ vs. Miocic will move forward.

READ MORE:  Tom Aspinall mocks Ciryl Gane over failed fight at UFC 304: 'Who would turn me down to do a film?'

With rumors of retirement and now talk of a potential fight with Alex Pereira, it has become increasingly more clear that Jones has no intention of ever fighting Tom Aspinall, much to the chagrin of fight fans and Ben Askren.

“We want to see Jon Jones fight Tom Aspinall,” Askren said. “Aspinall’s got the interim belt, Jon’s got the [other] belt. It just doesn’t make any sense. Just freaking make them fight, and then if Jon beats him, then Pereira vs. Jon.

“You can’t leave Tom Aspinall sitting here with the interim belt.”