Jon Jones has responded to the recent feedback about his new heavyweight physique.
Jones, who many believe to be the greatest mixed martial artist of all time, hasn’t fought since his controversial victory over Dominick Reyes at UFC 274 in 2020.
Following the victory over Reyes, Jones vacated the belt and revealed he would make the transition to heavyweight, and stressed he would need to take time away to bulk up in order to physically compete among the biggest fighters on the planet.
Having put on the correct amount of sizeable mass, Jones is set to return on Saturday night at UFC 285 against Ciryl Gane for the vacant heavyweight title.
The gain in weight has had the community speculating if the speed, mobility and sharpness that Jones possessed at light heavyweight will translate to heavyweight.
Fans criticize Jon Jones’s heavyweight physique
After pre-fight images of Jones were released during fight week, fans were left unimpressed with the former light heavyweight champions’ new physique.
One fan wrote: “finally a before/after I can relate to.”
Another said: “Before and After Thanksgiving.”
Jones certainly doesn’t have the frame he once had at 205lbs, but he understands the six-pack and bulging abs aren’t necessary when competing at heavyweight. Just look at your Daniel Cormier and Cain Velazquez’s of MMA. Two former champions who didn’t have dazzling physiques but still had the ability to physically dominate their opposition.
Today, Jones addressed the criticism he’s received regarding his new frame on his Instagram story, posting:
“Good thing it’s not a bodybuilding competition! I have the strength and explosiveness of a lion right now. I can focus on leaning out better for my next fight. Most importantly, I’m 250 (pounds), still moving like a light heavyweight.”
If Jones can successfully claim the heavyweight title in his first fight in his new home, it furthers his case of cementing himself as the greatest of all time.
On the other hand, Gane attempts to capture the heavyweight title for the second time in his career after falling short against Francis Ngannou at UFC 270 in January last year.
What do you make of Jon Jones’ response to those criticizing his physique?