Daniel Cormier does not believe Jon Jones has done enough to earn the No. 1 pound-for-pound ranking.
On Saturday night, ‘Bones’ made his long-awaited return to the Octagon for a UFC heavyweight title fight with No. 1 contender Ciryl Gane. Fans and fighters had no idea what to expect from Jones after more than three years removed from his last performance. It only took the light heavyweight GOAT two minutes to remind the world exactly who he is.
Capturing Gane in a guillotine against the fence, Jon Jones claimed the heavyweight title with minimal effort. As a result, ‘Bones’ skyrocketed to the top of the UFC’s pound-for-pound rankings, unseating the previous No. 1 ranked Alexander Volkanovski. Speaking on his ESPN program DC & RC, Daniel Cormier suggested that Jones’ ascension to the top of the rankings may be a bit premature, particularly when you take his past issues with drug use and banned substances into account.
“This always puts me in a tough position,” Cormier said. “I will always say that guys that have bad things attached to their name should not be held on high. I think especially with the drugs and the steroid failures and those types of things. I think when you have those things, it’s hard to call you the greatest of all time. And I know Anderson (Silva) and all those guys, but I think he’s in the conversation because he’s become a heavyweight champion.”
Daniel Cormier Believes Alexander Volkanovski is Still the No. 1 P4P Fighter
“I don’t, in my opinion, believe he (Jones) should be number one pound-for-pound,” Cormier revealed. “I think Alexander Volkanovski should still stay there. I don’t think he should be the number one pound-for-pound fighter in the world, but I have no issue with it if people have voted that” (transcription by MMA News).
One could argue that Daniel Cormier is understandably biased and maybe even a bit bitter towards Jon Jones’ success given their history with one another.
The top spot in the P4P rankings has been the topic of much debate in the MMA community following UFC 284 last month. In the main event, then No. 1 ranked fighter Alexander Volkanovski stepped up to challenge UFC lightweight titleholder and No. 2 ranked fighter Islam Makhachev. The Dagestani destroyer walked out of RAC Arena in Perth with his title intact following a unanimous decision victory. Many assumed that would result in Makhachev being elevated to the No. 1 ranking, but the close nature of the contest kept Volkanovski sitting atop his perch. That is until Jon Jones made his triumphant return last weekend.
Do you agree with Daniel Cormier’s assessment or do you believe Jon Jones has earned his spot at the top?