UFC 140 Results: Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans Complete Breakdown
Reigning UFC Light-Heavyweight champion Jon Jones capped off his meteoric rise in 2011 with a third straight victory over a highly touted former champion.
Taking on Lyoto Machida at last night's UFC 140 in Toronto, Jones fought through some initial adversity to defeat the karate master with a second-round guillotine choke that left Machida lying unconscious.
As the champion looks to take a break going into 2012, he will await the winner of January's UFC on FOX 2 bout between Rashad Evans and Phil Davis to find out who his next challenger will be.
Bad blood has been brewing between Jones and Evans since March, as Evans was initially slated to take on Shogun Rua at UFC 128 before suffering a knee injury. Angry with Jones for accepting the title shot, Evans was again given a chance at the belt when he was offered Jones later in the year, but again injuries on both sides postponed the fight.
If Evans can defeat Davis and remain healthy, he will finally get a crack at Jones.
Here is the complete breakdown for this potential light heavyweight battle.
The arsenal of strikes Jones possesses is diverse and immense.
Throwing and landing a multitude of funky kicks and elbows, Jones has dominated almost every reputable striker in the division.
Jones took the belt from Muay Thai ace Shogun Rua back in March, knocking the Brazilian out in the third round. Against Rampage Jackson, Jones dominated the heavy-handed former champion, utilizing his reach advantage.
In the second round of last night's bout, Jones was able to overcome initial problems with Machida and defeat him, marking his third straight win over an upper-echelon, veteran striker.
Evans has had trouble with unorthodox strikers in the past, losing the title to Machida at UFC 98. His only major advantage may be in punching power, has Evans has a vicious overhand right.
Regardless, the advantage is clear.
Wrestling and Grappling
In terms of pure wrestling ability, Evans may have a slight advantage, as he is former junior college national champion and wrestled three years for Michigan State University.
Evans has solid shots and great top control, while also possessing an underrated grappling game as a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu under Rolles Gracie.
Jones has amazing wrestling skills as well, as he is a regional Greco-Roman champion and also a former national junior college champion and All-American. He does not, however, have experience against top guys in the NCAA, something Evans does have.
When focusing on overall grappling, Jones is one of the most dominant fighters when in top control and can smother his opponents thanks to the continued tutelage of Greg Jackson.
Jones has not had his guard tested yet, although he shows no fear of fighting off his back as he pulled guard against Rampage Jackson.
With Evans' experience and Jones' freakish abilities displayed thus far, this part of the game is pretty much even.
With only two submission wins in his career—one via strikes—it is safe to say that Evans does not prefer the tapout as a means to victory.
Jones, on the other hand, has five submission wins on his record and has shown a great liking for chokes, as his past two wins over Machida and Jackson have both been via choke.
The champion loves the guillotine specifically, and he looks like a master of the move.
It is clear who's the submission ace here.
In terms of pure muscle size, Evans is the stronger opponent as he has significantly more mass than Jones.
The champion has the ability to push people around in the cage, but does not have the huge strength advantage, as Jones uses more leverage to get the most power out of his long and lanky body.
Going by who can push more weight, Evans takes it.
Neither fighter has really gassed in any of their bouts, especially within the UFC.
Evans has a lot of experience going to decision, fighting into the third round in nine of his fights.
Jones is no stranger to going deep into fights either, as his last fight against Rampage Jackson went into the fourth round.
Both guys are well conditioned athletes and are unlikely to gas out.
Jones: Jones has virtually dominated each one of his opponents his entire career and does not look like he will stop any time soon.
With such a diverse striking skill set, amazing wrestling and a propensity for submissions, Jones is an all-around fantastic fighter with no real major holes.
The only thing that can stop Jones is himself, so if he stays focused and does not get a big head after so much success, then he should have no problem putting Evans away.
Evans: What Evans would bring to the table is heavy hands, great wrestling and an aggressive, power puncher style. For Evans to take the win, he will have to really test Jones and pressure him.
Machida had Jones' number in the first round with his blitz attack, but Evans does not have that type of striking style. This will force the former champion to have to look for other ways to get past Jones' reach, meaning he will have to be even more aggressive and work to fight in that mid-range area.
Depending on how he fares against Phil Davis, Evans will have to make sure he is 100 percent for this fight. Any ailments to his health will only hinder his performance.
Although Evans will put up a good fight if he ever gets the chance to take on Jones, I doubt he will be able to do much.
The only way he can will is if Evans is very aggressive against Jones and is somehow able to pressure him.
Machida was able to find an opening with his blitz at last night's event, but Evans does not have that type of striking style, making it harder for him to overcome Jones' reach.
Because of this, I only see the fight going one way, and that's ending with Jones' hand raised.
Prediction: Jones via TKO (third round).
Be sure to stay tuned to Bleacher Report for all things UFC 140. B/R is your home for complete coverage of the December 10 fight card, from pre-fight predictions to in-fight coverage, results and post-fight analysis.
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