You want me to turn him down?!
Jon Jones went and did it now, folks.
If there was any discussion or speculation that Jones could surpass Anderson Silva (or Fedor, if you're of that camp) as the greatest fighter of all time, let it end now.
No matter what he does in the Octagon from this point forward, his legacy is burnt to a selfish crisp.
After turning down a fight with Chael Sonnen on eight days' notice, Jones has officially tarnished his legacy.
For comparison, Michael Bisping, long one of the UFC's ultimate heels, accepted a fight against Sonnen under the same time constraint.
He was not fully ready for the fight. This was not a title fight. This was not a fight he could easily win.
He took it anyway, and now we see how Jones reacts in a similar situation.
Current thinking is that Greg Jackson told Jones to turn it down, and Jones obliged. This is when "Bones" could have stepped up, showed his champion spirit and said, "Dude, are you kidding me? That is disrespectful to my sport, to my fellow fighters on the card and to my fans."
What did he do?
Blindly, Jones followed his coach's order and turned down Chael Sonnen.
Did Jon Jones ruin his legacy in turning down the fight with Sonnen?
I will be the first to say this: I thought Jon Jones would eventually surpass Silva as the greatest fighter of all time. He is that special.
Now, I cannot say that. This ruins it all. In one hour of a media conference call, Jon Jones and his irresponsible, unforgivably selfish choices have destroyed that which he has worked so hard to build.
Nike. His freaking company, the UFC.
These guys sponsor him, and now they look like they support a coward.
Way to go, sir.
If it seems like I am being harsh on him, I am not. This is the reality; these are the facts.
Jon Jones had a full training camp in place. He was ready to fight Dan Henderson, a fighter who is actually more of a threat to finish a fight than Sonnen.
Sonnen's bread and butter is his ability to close the range and use his wrestling to control fighters on the mat. He is a points fighter, and he has thrived on that tactic throughout his career.
Jon Jones is a ruthless finisher with excellent striking and wrestling. Jones has scarcely been in a bad position in his career, yet he turned down Sonnen.
Now, I am not suggesting Sonnen is an easy fight for anybody, but Jones is larger, he is more athletic, he is younger, and he is well-prepared.
This is a fight Jones takes easily 9.99 times out of 10, yet he turned it down.
Shame on you, dude.
The UFC, the fans and your sponsors deserved better.