Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from the world of MMA.
Jon Jones Hits out at 'Fake Ass Respect' from Dominick Reyes
Dominick Reyes might have been expecting a different reaction when he took to Twitter to express his delight at the prospect of facing a "champion so great" as Jon Jones, but Bones was having none of it:
Jon Bones Jones @JonnyBones
You started this whole thing talking about party favors and now you’re going to show this fake ass respect? Serious question Dominic, what exactly is so next generation about you or your fighting style? Youre a new name, that’s the only thing different about you. https://t.co/aBZTr0I2A8
Nevertheless, Reyes shrugged off Jones' angry reaction:
Jones' comments come after Reyes called him out after beating Chris Weidman in October, in which he said he wanted the 32-year-old's UFC light heavyweight title, not "any party favors," per MMA Fighting's Damon Martin.
Reyes later told Martin that Jones is a "liability" and it is a "big concern" of his that Jones makes it to the fight. He also said the champion has "really turned into quite the troll" of late.
Jones was hit with a 12-month suspension in 2016 after testing positive for banned substances and a 15-month suspension in 2017 for failing another drugs test.
The American further stoked the fire by giving insight into how he plans to beat compatriot Reyes in the Octagon:
Reyes is 12-0 in his career, and the first-round victory over former middleweight champion Weidman was impressive, but Jones has lost just once in 27 fights, and that was a disqualification for illegal elbows against Matt Hamill in 2009.
Kamaru Usman Says Jorge Masvidal Has Had 'Luck of the Draw'
Jorge Masvidal might be the baddest fighter in the UFC, but it's fair to say he's yet to win over welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.
Per Martin, he said:
"I wouldn't say [I've been] impressed. Because it's Masvidal, nothing's changed. He's the same guy. He's fought the same way forever. It's just the luck of the draw. He's getting that luck of the draw.
"Let's be honest, Darren Till dropped him in the first round of their fight, and let's say if he didn't land that punch [in the second round], how does that fight play out? Had he not landed that knee [against Ben Askren]—and I'm not going to say it's lucky because he drilled that—how does that fight play out? There's a lot of questions to be answered."
The Nigerian-born fighter said he's yet to see Gamebred dominate a "full-on welterweight from start to finish" but added he was pleased for Masvidal's recent success.
Masvidal has beaten Darren Till, Ben Askren—via a flying knee in a record-breaking five seconds—and Nate Diaz in 2019.
He won the one-off "BMF" belt in the latter fight after it was stopped by the doctor in the third round due to a large cut on Diaz's eye.
Masvidal had largely been dominating the contest up until then:
It seems Usman won't be impressed until Masvidal faces off against himself, Colby Covington or Tyron Woodley, but as Martin noted, they would have a size advantage over him:
The 34-year-old is 35-13 in his career and came into 2019 having lost back-to-back fights against Demian Maia and Stephen Thompson.
Khabib Nurmagomedov Won't Fight in Las Vegas Without Apology from NSAC
Khabib Nurmagomedov could finally meet Tony Ferguson in the Octagon in his next fight, but he won't return to Las Vegas anytime soon unless the Nevada State Athletic Commission offer him an apology.
Per RT, he said:
"We're in talks now. They suggested having it in Vegas in March, but they have to issue me an official apology for fining me for the incident on 6 October, 2018.
"If they apologise, I'll fight.
"If not, we'll pick another venue. I'll fight in April in New York. I'll be ready in April—March if Vegas apologises or gives me back my money."
Nurmagomedov was fined $500,000 by NSAC and given a nine-month suspension for his part in a post-fight brawl that erupted after he beat Conor McGregor at UFC 229 in October last year.
After retaining his lightweight belt against McGregor via submission, the Russian climbed out of the Octagon and attacked Dillon Danis, one of the men in McGregor corner.
UFC President Dana White has identified a showdown with Ferguson as one of next year's biggest fights:
The Eagle extended his record to 28-0 when he fought Dustin Poirier in September.
Ferguson, 25-3, won the interim lightweight belt in 2017 before being stripped of the title due to injury, and a long-awaited clash between the two would hold enormous appeal.