In life there are a number of things which are unquestionably linked together. Salt and Pepper. Pen and Paper. Night and Day. Despite everyone’s best efforts to move on, you can add Daniel Cormier and Jon Jones to that list. No matter what Cormier does, no matter how much he achieves, it feels like he’ll never be more than a few words away from Jon Jones.
Even in the current set of circumstances which see Cormier being set to retire next year while holding two UFC titles and Jones still being held in USADA purgatory, it feels inevitable that they will face one another again one day (even if it’s in some kind of nostagic, one off event hosted by a moonlighting boxing promoter several years from now).
Handcuffed by USADA for the last twelve months, Jones has been forced to sit and watch Cormier take back the title he lost when they met last July, defend that belt and then move on to win the UFC heavyweight strap from Stipe Miocic at UFC 214.
Speaking to RT Sport in Russia (via MMANytt), Jones explained he found it tough to process hearing that Cormier had beaten him to his long time goal of capturing both the light heavyweight and heavyweight titles.
“A part of me was upset at first. First, I was surprised. Then I became a little upset because Daniel Cormier was crowned the first heavyweight and light heavyweight champion and in my heart I know that Daniel Cormier is not the light heavyweight champion, so it bothered me at first,” Jones said.
“The next day after a few hours of being awake I realized I cannot be a hater. Someone else’s success has nothing to do with me. What God has for Daniel Cormier is for Daniel Cormier and what he has for me is for me, and so I had to find a place in my heart to be happy for him.”
The 31-year-old former champion may still be suspended and Cormier may be approaching retirement but that doesn’t mean Jones isn’t hoping their paths will cross again before ‘DC’ calls it a career.
“I think that beating him a third time would really do something to his confidence,” Jones explained. “In his head, I feel like he thinks he can still beat me, especially because the fight was going fairly well until I knocked him out. I want to crush his confidence. I want to let him know that I’m going to be Cael Sanderson. Cael Sanderson is a wrestler who beat Daniel Cormier seven times and I’m going to be his Cael Sanderson.”
“He said to me once, ‘Jon Jones, I’ll always be that kid in your bracket,’ meaning he will always be in the same tournament as me. I’m sure he regrets that because we always see who ends up in the first place position when we go up against each other, but I want to break his will. I want to break the idea of him thinking he can beat me. I believe doing that at light heavyweight would be the smartest thing to do, for a third time.”
In an ideal world, Jones would like to follow up recapturing the light heavyweight crown with a fourth and final match up against Cormier, this time for the heavyweight title. As far as the Jackson Wink star is concerned, it is a scenario which only has one possible outcome.
“Leading into our fourth fight, a possible fourth fight for the heavyweight championship of the world, his confidence won’t be in the right spot,” Jones said. “It won’t, and I think it will help me take that fourth victory over him and that heavyweight championship from him. I think I have his number.”
“No matter how hard he trains, I train a little bit harder. I’m a little bit younger, a bit longer, a little cuter.”