The UFC light heavyweight champ is widely regarded as the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world. His resume includes wins over some of the greatest fighters in MMA history. Other than a single blemish from a mere technicality, he is unbeaten in his professional career.
Despite all of his accomplishments, Jones still can’t seem to get any love from the UFC President.
According to MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani, White was recently making a “strong case” that UFC bantamweight champ Renan Barao was truly the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world. Helwani caught up with Jones a couple of days out from his UFC title fight with Glover Teixeira to get his thoughts on being snubbed by the boss:
I can’t argue with what Dana says. Ultimately, Dana’s not a fighter, he’s a promoter. I can’t always speak for his logic when he says certain things. His word really doesn’t change anything. I mean, he’s our boss and everything, but he’s no sensei, so whatever.
Jones may be a polarizing figure in MMA, but his reality in the UFC appears to be that of an average working American punching in a timesheet. He isn’t feeling the love from the UFC on the promotional side of things, especially in comparison to fighters like Ronda Rousey and former light heavyweight champ Chuck Liddell:
I would like to have a great relationship with [Dana], Jones said. I don’t really want to comment on it too much, but I think it’s apparent where I rank with him. I’ll just say I’ll never be Chuck Liddell, but it’s all cool. As long as we respect each other and I do the best I can do for the company, everything will be cool.
To be fair, White has had several great things to say about Jones in the past. During an interview with the Brazilian media (h/t Sexto Round), the UFC President admitted Jones had surpassed Liddell as the most accomplished light heavyweight in UFC history.
There is still no denying the growing rift between White and the 26-year-old champ. Jones is obviously not a happy camper in the UFC right now. If left unsettled, this could become a real problem for the UFC down the road.
Instead of hyping a hypothetical fight between Rousey and Floyd Mayweather, perhaps White should be more focused on patching things up with Jones.
Jordy McElroy is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA writer for Rocktagon.