Vitor Belfort Calls Jon Jones 'The Best Fighter of All Time'

Jordy McElroyCorrespondent ISeptember 1, 2012

Vitor Belfort - MMAFighting
Vitor Belfort - MMAFighting

Vitor Belfort believes the Jon Jones hype.

The MMA legend is slated to go toe-to-toe with "Bones" for the UFC light heavyweight title at UFC 152 in a bout that is being billed as "The Old Lion vs. The New Lion."

Jones, who is arguably the greatest talent MMA has ever seen, became the youngest champion in UFC history in March 2011 by defeating Mauricio "Shogun" Rua.

The win over Shogun was only the beginning.

Jones went on to dominate other legendary names like Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, Lyoto Machida and Rashad Evans.

Former Pride middleweight champ Dan Henderson might've been next on the list. He was initially scheduled to fight Jones at UFC 151, but a partially torn MCL suffered during training forced him to withdraw a week out from the bout.

Jones was offered a replacement fight against Chael Sonnen, but the young champ and his camp decided it was too dangerous to take a bout against an upper-echelon fighter like Sonnen on short notice.

Henderson and Sonnen's misfortunes were a blessing in disguise for Belfort, a former UFC light heavyweight champion.

For the first time in five years, Belfort will make his light heavyweight return against a man he calls "the best fighter of all-time."

"Here I am 35-years-old, 17 years into my career, fighting the best fighter of all-time, in the history of the UFC, a guy who's [considered] the best athlete in MMA," Belfort said during an appearance on Fuel TV's UFC Tonight.

Belfort continues:

I'm thankful for Lorenzo [Fertitta] and Dana [White] to trust me and to give me the opportunity. I'm really going to a division that I don't fight in anymore, but I have history. I think I have the right to go in there and fill [in] as a replacement.

Don't miss this. Toronto on [September] 22nd. You guys will see the old lion vs. the new lion, the old-fashioned fighter with the new breed.

The all-time debate has apparently been settled in Belfort's mind. What about the minds of MMA fans?

Has Jon Jones done enough to surpass all-time greats in Anderson Silva, Georges St-Pierre and Fedor Emelianenko?