Dana White Addresses Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier 3, Not Convinced About DC’s Retirement
Former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones will be cleared to return to action after Oct. 28 and there’s a ton of potential matchups for his first fight back.
Jones received a 15-month suspension from USADA after testing positive for a banned substance last year but his sanction will end in less than six weeks time.
While Alexander Gustafsson has already called for another shot at Jones, a potential third fight with current heavyweight and light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier would seem to be another strong possibility.
Cormier has already downplayed the fight when addressing Jones’ return by pointing out his upcoming fight against current WWE superstar Brock Lesnar, which is expected to take place in early 2019.
Still, Cormier has said he would be open to defending his light heavyweight title if the right opportunity happened and a chance to avenge a prior defeat to Jones would seem like the perfect scenario.
UFC president Dana White talked about a potential Jones vs. Cormier rematch on Thursday while also pointing out that there are still obstacles in the way from making that fight happen any time soon.
“We’ll see how this thing plays out,” White said about Jones vs. Cormier. “First of all, Cormier’s hand is still messed up from the fight with Stipe [Miocic]. We’ll see how this whole thing plays out. This thing just happened yesterday with Jones. Who saw that coming?
“He’s not in shape. He’s got to get in shape and train. There’s turmoil going on right now in his camp. There’s a battle between [Donald] Cerrone and the camp’s split in half. Half of his guys are over with Cerrone, the other half are over there with the other guys.”
White has previously stated that despite rumors, there’s no chance Jones fights as early as UFC 230 in New York on Nov. 3. He also added that it’s likely Jones wouldn’t compete again until early next year as he gets back in fight shape following the end of his suspension.
Timing might be the biggest problem with this fight considering Cormier has said repeatedly he plans on retiring ahead of his 40th birthday in March 2019.
That means it’s likely Cormier would probably have time for the fight against Lesnar before his retirement date comes due.
Despite that proclamation, White isn’t convinced Cormier will walk away early next year.
“Everybody says that,” White stated when talking about Cormier’s retirement. “That’s what they all say. Retiring isn’t as easy as it sounds.”
As for Jones, White says he hasn’t spoken to the former champion since his suspension was revealed on Wednesday and prior to that they had only chatted over text message.
White hopes that Jones makes the most of his career once he’s ready to return after a shortened suspension from USADA after a second violation of the UFC’s anti-doping policy.
“This is his life,” White said about Jones. “He’s obviously had a lot of opportunities and he’s getting another one. Let’s see what he does with it.”