Yes, Anderson Silva has been at it longer. His streak of 10 title defenses is the greatest display of domination in MMA history. The admission that Jones is the best in the world isn't taking anything away from The Spider. His legacy is etched in stone.
But Jones' domination of Sonnen shows that there isn't anyone in the sport as dominant as the young phenom.
Sonnen's legitimacy as a title contender was in question heading into the fight. He has spent the bulk of his career at middleweight and was coming off of a loss against Silva, but that didn't guarantee that Sonnen would be a walk in the park.
Sonnen wasn't supposed to be a challenge for Silva either. When the two first met in Aug. 2010 Silva was the heavy favorite. Yet Sonnen was able to humanize the often mythologized Spider. Even in the rematch, with Silva winning by emphatic TKO in the second round, Sonnen made him look less than invincible by winning the first round with his grappling prowess.
Who is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world?
When Jones stepped into the cage against Sonnen, there wasn't a hint of mortality. Despite the same fearless aggression from Sonnen, Jones was simply too big, too quick and too strong for the challenger.
A conceivable path to victory exists against Silva. Obviously, it's easier said than done, but a world-class wrestler with the attitude to take the fight to Silva can give him serious fits.
A conceivable way to beat Jon Jones just doesn't exist as of yet. He can dominate the stand up game with his reach and versatility. He comes at opponents with different strikes from angles that other fighters physically can't pull off. His clinch game is second to none and we've seen over and over the kind of damage he can do on the ground.
It's become redundant at this point, but Jones is a fighter unlike any other. His blend of dynamic skills and athleticism is unlike anything the sport has seen as of yet.
Dominating performances like the one that he turned in at UFC 159 have become the norm. It's just expected at this point. That's why Jones is already on the precipice of being called the greatest of all time.