With the upcoming bout with rival Rashad Evans, let’s take a look back at the top five moments from the young, yet dazzling career of Jonny Bone Jones:
5) Beat-down of Stephan Bonnar - UFC 94
Though this wasn’t ended in the fashion we’ve become accustomed to, this fight was filled with highlight clips. First that comes to mind is the spinning-back-elbow http://youtu.be/vYP7MZZGYIs
Throughout this fight Jones tossed the original TUF runner up around like a rag-doll. This fight put Jon Jones on the map.
4) Destruction of Vladimir Matyushenko – UFC Live 2
It took less than two minuets for Jones to take out “The Janitor” on live cable TV. A game opponent for about the first six seconds, Matyushenko was brutally pounded by the razor sharp elbows of the lightweight champ. This makes my list due to the viewing audience, allowing the casual fan to witness Jones in action.
3) Bader taps - UFC 126
This fight of two future stars battling for a chance for the strap makes the list. Bader is a college wrestling standout and looks like he was carved from marble, a prefect candidate to take the wind out the Jones sail, right? Not so fast my friend, this bout was close to entering the third and final round when Jones locked in a guillotine choke forcing Ryan Bader to tap in front of a huge Brazilian crowd. This win placed Jon Jones in line for a crack at Shogun’s belt.
2) The New Champion – UFC 128
“Welcome to the Jones Era” – I hated that when Rogan dropped that line (referencing Lyoto Machida), but I think this time, the statement holds true. Jones faced off against Shogun at UFC 128 for the LHW title. Shogun looked completely outmatched from the opening bell. I still don’t know if this was a case of Jones being a complete bad-ass or Shogun having an off night at the worst time. Either way, Bones had his way with Rua from the start, forcing Herb Dean to call a stop to the fight in the second round.
1) Dragon Slayer – UFC 140
Machida gave Jones a heck of a fight, up until the second round. The back and forth between past and present champ was a joy to watch for any fan of MMA, Jones turned the table with a nasty elbow from Lyoto’s guard, causing his forehead to split wide open. Machida wasn’t the same after that blow. Jon Jones put an end to the fight was a classic standing choke. Big John McCarthy broke the hold, Machida passed out like a drunk on fraternity rush night.
Before the end of 2012, this list will be updated, I’ll bet the ranch. Tune into Jones vs. Evans on April 21!