While fanboys worldwide can’t stop yapping about how ridiculously awesome future UFC light heavyweight and heavyweight champion Jon Jones could be, the humble 23-year-old has whipped out his earmuffs because he ain’t trying to hear the hoopla.
“The hype thing, I kind of wish it would all go away,” Jones told MMAFighting.com. “I feel like I’m just a guy who has a job and I’m good at it, but I didn’t ask for all the hype or to be the next big thing. I’m just trying to go out there and do what I love doing.”
“Bones” is a chiseled specimen that brings a unique – perhaps unmatched – combination of speed, strength, skill, athleticism and length that make it difficult not to anoint him the next coming. In addition to his diversified arsenal, an infectious Kool-Aid smile always comes in tow. So it’s hard not to like the grounded youngster.
“It’s weird though, because I’m saying that I never asked for it, but I do want to be the best and I’m aware that this is going to come with it, so what do you do?,” Jones rhetorically asked. “You just realize it’s part of the game, try to be yourself, and remember that you’re not anything until you’re the champion.”
Jones stakes claim to a dominant 10-1 record and his resume says eight of his wins have come by way of devastating finish. He enters Sunday’s contest a heavy 6-to-1 favorite to leave the San Diego Sports Arena with another landslide victory. Despite his torrid tear down the G.O.A.T. path, and all the hoopla that has latched onto the bandwagon, Jones still has his earmuffs securely fastened.
“I look at Vladimir [Matyushenko] as the toughest guy I’ve ever faced. A lot of people might be thinking, ‘Oh, Jones is taking him lightly.’ That’s silly,” Jones emphatically said. “Look at the guy’s record. I’ve never fought anyone with a record like that. The average fan might take him lightly because they don’t know who he is … He’s fought for a belt before. Who else have I fought who’s fought for a belt before? No one.”
On the flip side, Matyushenko has never tried to tame an opponent as beastly as Jones before either, and the Jackson Submission trained fighter knows it.
“You can have all the experience in the world, but if you haven’t fought a guy who fights like me, I’m not sure how much that’s going to help you,” Jones said of his 28-month professional career. “I’m a fighter who can throw high kicks with both legs. I can throw you or I can shoot for your legs and take you down that way. I can do a spinning technique or a flying technique.”
Oh don’t worry Bones, most of us are already well aware of your repertoire. For those that aren’t, it will be on display tomorrow on Versus beginning live at 9PM ET/6PM PT.