A month from today, UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones will put his gold up for grabs at UFC 159 with Chael Sonnen serving as his challenger. As has been the case in most of his match-ups, Jones will enter the Octagon as the favorite for a number of reasons including his overall skill-set, troublesome reach, and reputation as one of the MMA’s most talented athletes.
However, according to Sonnen, the title-holding 25-year old lacks experience against adversaries possessing the qualities he’ll bring into the Octagon on April 27 and that should prove to be the difference.
“I don’t know that Jon is vulnerable to anything. He’s a good, solid, complete guy. He finds crazy chokes, some real wild stuff…he uses his length and body real well. He’s got very awkward, sneaky takedowns and trips,” explained Sonnen in an interview with the UFC. “At the same time, he’s never been in there with a gangster before. He’s been in there with a bunch of little boys that were scared of him.”
“He’s never had an experience like this. There’s a reason he said no the first time,” Sonnen continued, referring to a proposed pairing in 2012 Jones turned down based on a lack of preparation time. One quality he sees as having influenced the decision has to do with his aggressive approach to grappling in relation to Jones having never been taken down in a fight.
“I’m the best MMA wrestler in the world. I can take Jon Jones down anytime I want to,” he concluded. “When the guy in the shark suit clears the ring and the guy with the dreadlocks says fight, I’m gonna walk across that ring and put him on his ass just like I have everybody else.”
Though talk is cheap, Sonnen certainly seems ready to back his words up. He holds an overall record of 27-12-1 including wins over a number of top middleweights and near-success against pound-for-pound great Anderson Silva.
The full interview with Sonnen can be seen below:
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC