Skip to main content

You might be forgiven for thinking that Jon Jones, who last fought in February 2020, would have made his heavyweight debut by now.

But no. The former longtime UFC light heavyweight champion remains firmly on the sidelines of the UFC as he prepares, or so he says, to make his comeback to the cage in pursuit of a world title in a second weight class. Previous statements from Jones suggested that he was targeting April (which obviously isn’t happening) or International Fight Week in July to make his return.

But after learning that his preferred opponent Stipe Miocic isn’t available until around September, Jones says he will sit out until then if need be — but he isn’t exactly happy about it.

“Stipe is saying that he will be at his absolute peak in September. I’m disappointed but patient, I want the heavyweight goat at his absolute best. I’ll wait until September. No excuses,” Jones announced on Twitter.

After being confronted by a fan who said that the situation “sucks”, Jones agreed: “It really does man, my coaches and their families were definitely excited for this fight. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed today.”

Jones has long said that he will wait until he feels at his best as a natural heavyweight before contemplating another fight, something which appears to have delayed, or even sidetracked, his career somewhat. But the news that he appears to have zeroed in on an opponent in former heavyweight champion Miocic is some sort of positive development at least.

It also appear possible that the hypothetical Jones vs. Miocic matchup could conceivably come with an interim title on the line, given Francis Ngannou’s knee injury, subsequent surgery as well as the strong suggestions that he wants to take on Tyson Fury in his next outing when he returns to fitness next year.