UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling believes Jon Jones should keep the same energy.
‘Bones’ returned to the octagon over the weekend in the main event of UFC 285. The return ended a three-year layoff for the former champion, as he hadn’t competed since a controversial decision win over Dominick Reyes in 2020. Upon his return last Saturday, Jones wasted no time returning to his winning ways.
The former light-heavyweight champion faced Ciryl Gane for the vacant heavyweight title in the headliner. Early into the first round, Jones got a takedown and quickly earned a submission by win via guillotine choke. With that, the legend was back, and was the UFC heavyweight champion.
However, as Aljamain Sterling has noted, Jon Jones didn’t beat Francis Ngannou for the title. ‘Funk Master’ discussed the UFC 285 main event on his podcast, and praised ‘Bones’ return. However, Sterling also implored Jones to keep the same energy on his new title reign.
Sterling recalled when the heavyweight champion would mock Daniel Cormier for his light-heavyweight title reign for not beating Jones for the title. The bantamweight stated that the newly crowned titleholder should treat himself the same way, as he didn’t defeat ‘The Predator’ to win the gold.
“My biggest thing that I would wanna see is that the UFC figures out a way to make Jon Jones vs. Francis Ngannou,” Aljamain Sterling said on his YouTube channel. “Or should I say, Francis Ngannou vs. Jon Jones. Because technically, Francis Ngannou is the – I don’t wanna say real champion, but he is still the real champ…Cause if we’re going by what Jon Jones said to ‘DC’, you were never really the champ. You were like a placeholder kind of thing, because he never actually beat him. When they were leading up to that fight, the rematch. Then same thing kind of applies here. You gotta keep the same energy.” (h/t MMA News)
He continued, “It’s no disrespect to Jon. Jon is Jon. And I’m not saying Jon is scared, I’m not saying Francis is scared. I just hope the UFC does what the fans want and we don’t get another Fedor Emelianenko situation where he never got to fight Brock Lesnar. We never got to see the biggest and the baddest dudes on the planet that everyone was talking about get to go at it. I don’t want to see these guys fight when they’re both 42 and 43, that’s like…I don’t wanna see that. I wanna see it now, within the next year. That would be nice.”