Jon Jones to Retire After Miocic Fight, Unless Francis Ngannou Calls
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Heavyweight Champion Jon "Bones" Jones is set to make his first title defense against Stipe Miocic in November, and the UFC all-time great believes it will be his final fight. But one fight could change his mind.
Jones' Retirement Plans
Jones (27-1, 21-1 UFC) has never lost in MMA, aside from a disqualification loss to Matt Hamill.
After a three-year hiatus as a light heavyweight champion, he returned as a heavyweight and won the vacant belt at UFC 285 in March. Jones' resume is filled with former champions and UFC Hall of Famers, and defeating Miocic would be the icing on the cake.
"Right now, my goal is to have one more big fight against Stipe Miocic, Madison Square Garden, and then kinda hang it up from there," Jones told Fox Sports Australia. "I think the Stipe fight will be plenty for me. I feel like I don't really have much to prove after beating Stipe Miocic.
I've been in the game a long time and in fighter years, I'm an old guy. I've been training for a long time, I've been in the game for a long time and got some small injuries. I just really want to be around for my family, be around for my kids, and have a good head on my shoulders, and have joints that work.
So I can see it coming to an end really soon, and I'm happy with that. I'm really proud of my career."
The Ngannou Exception
When asked if he would ever fight the great Russian knockout, Sergei Pavlovic, Jones was not interested.
However, the question of fighting Francis Ngannou sparked a different response. "I do believe a Francis Ngannou fight would be worth entertaining, not retiring," Jones said. "I think a Francis fight would come with some serious revenue, and that would make it worth my while.
Francis is a former champion, he's pretty damn popular here in America and across the world. It would bring in a lot of money, and for that, I would be willing to come back. Everyone is talking about Sergei, and Sergei is a huge challenge, but no one knows who he is.
In the grand scheme of things, no one knows who he is. I think Luke Thomas said it best, saying 'high risk, very low reward,' where you could fight a guy like Francis Ngannou and get the whole world talking. It would be worth the risk, worth the money, all of it.
So who knows? Maybe the UFC will come with the right numbers, and we can make this Sergei thing happen. But as of right now, I got all the accolades, nothing really to prove. I think a Francis fight would get me really excited to maybe keep going."