The UFC 165 epic light heavyweight title fight between rivals Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson will be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame this summer.
In September 2013, Jones and Gustafsson met in the main event of UFC 165 at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. At the time Jones was on an incredible roll, destroying a number of future Hall of Famers on his path to the top of the light heavyweight division, and the betting odds considered him a lopsided favorite to retain his belt. Few were giving Gustafsson a chance to defeat Jones, but he ended up giving the champ the toughest fight of his career.
Jones and Gustafsson went five hard rounds in an instant classic that was the “Fight of the Year” in 2013. Though Jones won a unanimous decision at the end of 25 minutes, it was an incredible back-and-forth fight that saw both men reach their physical and mental limits and some even thought Gustafsson won the fight. Regardless of the outcome, there’s no doubt it was the best fight of Jones’s and Gustafsson’s careers, and one of the best fights of all time.
On Saturday during the UFC 248 broadcast, the promotion announced that Jones vs. Gustafsson will stand the test of time and will be inducted into the Hall of Fame’s Fight Wing at International Fight Week this July in Las Vegas.
UFC president Dana White offered up the following statement about the bout.
“Going into the first Jones vs. Gustafsson fight, fans and media didn’t care about the fight, because they didn’t believe Gustafsson deserved a title shot, and this thing ended up being the greatest light heavyweight title fight in UFC history,” UFC President Dana White said (via UFC.com).
“To be there and watch it live was amazing. It was an incredible fight and both athletes gave everything they had for all five rounds. This fight was such a classic it was named the 2013 Fight of the Year and will always be considered one of the greatest fights in combat sports history. This fight showed what a true champion Jon Jones was, as this was the first time he was taken into deep waters and truly tested. This fight also put Gustafsson on the map and showed his true potential. Congratulations to Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson on being inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame ‘Fight Wing’ for such an epic fight.”
Where do you rank Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson among the greatest fights in UFC history?