“I think this is why it was so hard to actually make the call, because I truly do believe that right now is when [Jones is] primed to get beat… [This is] the first time [he’s fighting] under USADA testing, meaning no more rehydrating with an IV. He’s been away from the game for a little bit. People kind of harp on the fact that it’s been a year since he’s fought, a year and a half, that’s not the thing. Jon Jones has only fought me and Glover Texeira in two years. In two years, he’s had two fights. Right now is the time that he’s ready to get beat if there ever was a time. So it made for a tougher decision because in April of 2014 he fought Glover and then he fought me in January and he hasn’t fought since… So the time away. First time not dealing with the hydration through IV. First time under such strict testing with USADA. All these factors play it to me like ‘man I’ve gotta get him in the Octagon right now.’ I think this is the time that he’s ready to get beat.”
-Daniel Cormier talks to Brian Stann on Sirius XM’s “Toe-2-Toe” show about Jon Jones’ return at UFC 197 next week (transcribed by FoxSports.com).
Penick’s Analysis: Counting on outside factors to expect Jones to be more vulnerable doesn’t seem like sound logic. Is there proof he was rehydrating with an IV before anyway? If he was cutting safely before without overly dehydrating himself, there’s no reason to believe that will be any different in this return fight. And the fact that he’s fought just twice in two years doesn’t necessarily mean anything, because he’s been healthy and training throughout the last year. If Jones comes back as good as before, this is simply wishful thinking on Cormier’s part.
[Photo (c) Jayne Kamin-Oncea via USA Today Sports]
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Cormier’s right, in as much that IF there’s a time to beat Jones), this is as good a time as any. Between the new rules for dugs, weight cutting, and the rust factor, those are certainly factors for which one should account. That said, it’s like cutting the point spread from minus 17 to minus 14 points…