Back in 2013, former light heavyweight champion Jon Jones and number-one-contender Alexander Gustafsson engaged in an unforgettable war for the ages. In the end, Jones would walk away with a unanimous decision win, though many parties believed Gustafsson had done enough to steal the title.
Today, Jones is neck-deep in a complicated stretch that has seen him detained for a laundry list of crimes, stripped of his UFC title, and suspended for failing a USADA-administered drug test. Gustafsson, meanwhile, fought yesterday, rebounding from a two-fight skid by defeating a game Jan Blachowicz.
Given Gustafsson’s return to relevance, and the fact that Jones could soon return to action if his upcoming hearing goes well, a rematch between the two fighters suddenly seems like a real possibility. Yet in a recent interview with Sporting News (via MMAMania.com), Gustafsson revealed he’s not particularly hung up on settling his score with Jones. Instead, he’s interested in fights that will get him closer to a third crack at UFC gold.
“The fight we had is history to me now,” Gustafsson said. “Before, I was looking for that rematch and I wanted it real bad, title fight or not. Right now, I just take every fight that’s logical and will take me somewhere. If it’s Jon Jones, it’s Jon Jones. I’m not going to wait for a second fight.”
“As long as he [Jones] gets me to a title shot, I’m up for anything,” the Swede elaborated.
In his interview with Sporting News, Gustafsson also weighed in the drama of Jones’ recent life.
“As a role model, people look up to him. It’s just sad to see it,” Gustafsson said. “He’s one of a kind. He’s made something for him that nobody else has ever done in this sport and then he just throws it out the window. I just think it’s sad.”
Do you want to see a second showdown between Jones and Gustafsson, or would you prefer other fights for both men? Sound off, PENN nation!