They were the best of friends.
Now they are bitter enemies.
This is UFC: Jones vs. Evans.
In the great words of Big Jon McCarthy "LET'S GET IT ON!"
But first, let's see how "Sugar" Rashad Evans and Jon "Bones" Jones stack up before they face each other for the UFC Light Heavyweight Title and decide which one is the true champion.
Jon Jones and Rashad Evans are both unique fighters in the stand-up game.
Rashad Evans was always seen as a lay-and-pray fighter up until his fights with Sean Salmon and Chuck Liddell where everyone witnessed two of the greatest knockouts in UFC history.
Now, Rashad is very unpredictable due to his incredible speed, raw power and explosiveness.
Whenever someone fights him now, they don't know what he is going to do.
Just ask Rampage Jackson. When Evans and Jackson finally faced off at UFC 114, Rashad rocked Rampage in the first round with a punch that came out of nowhere.
Jon Jones, however, is in a very different category. In the picture above, he is throwing a spinning back elbow to the head of Matt Hamill and landing it. That is not an easy task.
Also, that is just one of the fancy moves that Jones has in his arsenal. He has kicks, knees, punches that come from all sorts of directions.
What Jones lacks in power compared to Rashad, he makes up for in lighting fast speed and an unorthodox style.
Both Evans and Jones are very well-decorated wrestlers in their own way.
Jon Jones was a Junior Greco-Roman Regional Champion in 2004, Division I State Champion in 2005, an NHSCA Senior All-American in 2005 and a NJCAA Champion in 2006.
Rashad Evans' wrestling is a notch higher than Jones' though.
Rashad won a National Junior College Championship at Niagara County Community College in 2000 and went on to become an NCAA Division I wrestler at Michigan State University.
After their college years, they've both gone on to become very well-decorated MMA fighters in the UFC with incredible wrestling implemented in each of their fights.
On paper, it's safe to say Rashad is the better wrestler.
But from what we've seen so far, Jones looks to be just as capable.
Evans has shown he is a very dominant wrestler, but Jones looks like a freak of nature out there.
Just look at his fights with Matt Hamill, Stephan Bonnar and Ryan Bader.
Advantage: I'm going to play it safe and say they are even.
Neither of these fighters is the jiu jitsu expert, that's for certain.
They both came into MMA as wrestlers with some striking knowledge and picked up on jiu jitsu as they went along.
But that doesn't mean they aren't capable in that area of the fight game.
Jones has three submission victories to his credit, and all of them are by guillotine choke.
Unfortunately, those submission victories were over competition that have almost no jiu jitsu knowledge.
To top it off, there is no listing of Jones' ranking in jiu jitsu. For all we know, he could be a blue belt and be some sort of prodigy.
Then, there is Rashad Evans. Evans has a black belt in both Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Gaidojutsu which is Greg Jackson's form of Jiu Jitsu.
But, we haven't seen Evans get into a major grappling match with anyone in the UFC.
He has two submission victories on his resume, but one was by punches, and the other one doesn't state what type of submission it was that stopped the fight.
But we've witnessed in the past that just because you have a black belt doesn't automatically mean you're a black belt in jiu jitsu.
Advantage: I'll be cautious and say Evans.
Rashad Evans and Jon Jones are two of the most well-conditioned athletes in mixed martial arts today.
But that doesn't mean they haven't had their moments of getting a little winded in a fight in the past.
I can recall fights that both Evans and Jones looked like their cardio was an issue.
For Rashad, it was his fights with both Tito Ortiz and Michael Bisping.
With Jones, the only fight I can recall him having conditioning problems was in his fight with Stephan Bonnar in round three.
But since those fights, both of them have looked very well-conditioned and haven't had any problem with their conditioning.
Sorry to all of you Rashad Evans fans, but I had to put up this photo.
Seriously though, both fighters have the ability to take a good punch.
Evans has had his chin tested and has gotten his bell rung plenty of times.
He was dropped in the third round in both of his fights with Thiago Silva and Rampage Jackson.
His only loss on his record is to Lyoto Machida, and that was by knockout. The end result was this beautiful picture above.
As for Jones, his chin has never truly been tested.
So we can't speculate if he has a tough chin or a glass one for that matter.
Jon Jones is listed at 6'4", cuts from 220 to make 205 and has a 84.5-inch reach.
Rashad Evans is 5'11", cuts from 220 to make 205 pounds and has a 75-inch reach.
Rashad Evans is 31 years old and is in the prime years of his MMA career.
He's still young, but some mixed martial artists don't age well.
Jon Jones is 23 years old and is already the UFC Light Heavyweight Champ.
He's ahead of the game and isn't even in in the prime of his career yet.
This is when the old debate of youth versus experience comes into the conversation.
Nine times out of 10, experience wins.
This time however, I believe youth trumps experience.
If there is one trait I can give to both of these fighters, it's how much heart they have as fighters.
Neither one of them has given up in a fight, and I commend both of them for that.
Finally, we have the fighters' charisma.
One thing I've noticed is that a lot of people don't know what charisma is to begin with.
Charisma, by definition, is a special personal quality or power of an individual making him/her capable of influencing or inspiring large numbers of people.
That definition is pretty straight forward, and I think you all know who wins this category.
Every time Rashad Evans walks into a room, the place is raining with boos. Nothing else can be heard; it gets so loud.
As for Jones, I've never seen so many people light up when he enters the room.
I wish I had a video camera from UFC 128 in Newark this year when Jones faced Shogun.
It can be seen clearly that people love Jones and hate Evans.
Of these nine categories for these two fighters, we have a definitive winner in Jon Jones.
Jon Jones: five
Rashad Evans: one
I can only hope my analysis is true come fight night, because like many other people, I'm a Jon Jones' fan and despise Rashad Evans.