Bellator Has Opened The Door For Jon Jones To Fight Under USADA Suspension

Over the past week, several mixed martial arts media members have expressed concern about Bellator’s decision to book Mirko Cro Cop for their 200th event. This is because Cro Cop has yet to begin serving a two-year USADA suspension for having human growth hormone in his system before UFC Fight Night: Henderson vs. Masvidal. Bellator’s decision to book Mirko Cro Cop despite his USADA suspension puts at risk a well known unwritten rule among most MMA promotions and commissions. The unwritten rule states that no fighter should be given a commission license or be booked by a company until he/she has completed the suspension. This rule was meant to show competitors that if they got caught cheating, the ability to earn money would be stripped away. As a result of this, media members like Ryan Harkness of MMA Mania are asking the question does Bellator want to be known as the promotion that regularly breaks the unwritten rule. For instance, he stated in a recent article on this topic that “Bellator wants to use every single star they can get their hands on. But at the same time, do they want to be known as a promotion that ignores USADA suspensions for performance-enhancing drugs?”.

However, one can argue that Bellator broke the unwritten rule because they see a small window of opportunity to potentially sign Jon Jones in the near future. Jon Jones is currently facing a two to four-year suspension for his second violation under the USADA. The USADA violations are related to Jones ingesting substances that were banned by the agency. For example, according to ESPN, Jones was suspended for a year by USADA on November 7th of 2016 (“retroactive to July 6, the date Jones was pulled from a UFC 200 pay-per-view title fight”). This is because Jones tested positive for “the banned substances clomiphene and letrozole” which can be found in male enchantment drugs. A year later, Jon Jones committed another violation after he tested positive for turinabol in a drug test leading up to UFC 214. Due to this, if USADA decides to suspend him for four years retroactive to July 29th there is a possibility that he requests his release; to continue fighting elsewhere until the suspension is complete. If the UFC grants his freedom, Bellator would have real interest in signing Jon Jones because they have already established that entertainment is more important than the health of the sport.

As a result, if  Bellator and Jon Jones agreed to a contract, he would instantly become the company’s biggest television and pay per view star. According to mmapayout.com, the worst pay per view headlined by Jones had over three hundred thousand buys which is more than both Bellator pay per views. Furthermore, Jon is still considered one of the greatest of all time thus his potential presence in the company could entice free agents to jump ship. This is because these free agents would have the opportunity to be recognized as the first fighter to beat Jon Jones.

How To Beat Jon Jones

The only way a fighter can beat Jon Jones is by capitalizing off of his belief that he can outshine the opponent at their expertise

Introduction

Throughout his UFC career, Jon Jones has shown to a tendency to want to prove that he is better than his opponents in every single aspect of mixed martial arts (MMA). As a result of this, every time Jones goes into the octagon he has the mindset that the fight will take place in the area where his opponents are strongest.

Jon Jones vs Ryan Bader

For instance, at UFC 126 Jon Jones fought Ryan Bader who was a decorated wrestler at Arizona State University during the early to mid-2000’s. In fact, according to thesundevils.com, Ryan Bader was an all-American wrestler at 197 pounds during the 2004-05 season after getting fourth place in the 2004 NCAA Championships.

Due to his wrestling background, Jones entered the Octagon with the mindset that he was going to take down Bader. This is because he wanted to let Bader know that his most effective weapon was useless against him.

Therefore Jones successfully attempted and captured a double leg take down thirty seconds into their fight and proceeded to grapple with him for the majority of the fight until he got the guillotine choke in the second round.

How Beat Jon Jones

Due to this, the only way a fighter can beat Jones is by capitalizing off of his belief that he can outshine the opponent at their expertise. Therefore the only fighters who have a realistic shot of beating Jon Jones are strikers with one punch or kick knockout power.

This is because Jones is going to enter those fights with the mindset of trying to show that he is a better striker than his opponent. As a result of this, Jones will stand in or at the edge of the pocket and begin to throw strikes which expose him to greater risk because it only takes one big strike to end the fight.

On the other hand, wrestlers are unlikely to pose a serious threat to Jones because they need to complete several steps before getting in position to finish a fight.

For instance, wrestlers have to decide whether they want to set up by throwing strikes or if they want to shoot for a takedown without a setup. Once this happens, wrestlers have to make sure that they clasped both hands around the legs before the opponent can obtain an under-hook.

If this happens, wrestlers need to be stronger than the opponent to pick him up and dump him on the floor; or they have to hope that the opponent gets fatigued and can’t defend the takedown.

After the fight goes to the floor, they need to figure out how to open the opponent’s guard by landing body punches that will force the opponent to lower his arms to protect the body from further damage.

As you can see wrestlers can give Jon Jones multiple chances to reset if in any danger.