Jon Jones isn’t letting his current dispute with UFC brass go.
The reigning UFC light heavyweight champion has been embroiled in a back-and-forth with the organisation in recent days squared around what Jones says is the company’s unwillingness to shell out the necessary funds for a fan-friendly heavyweight fight with Francis Ngannou.
Jones shared a message on social media recently in which he said he was relinquishing his 205-pound title and said that the division’s two prospective contenders — Dominick Reyes and Jan Blachowicz — didn’t particularly “excite” him, but that he would be willing to return in 2021 for a superfight with middleweight champion Israel Adesanya… provided the bottom line is right.
Referencing Jones’ stance with the media following last weekend’s UFC 250 event in Las Vegas, White underlined his stance by saying that Jones — nor indeed any of the current spate of fighters highlighting what they see as pay inequality — “doesn’t have to fight.”
Jones issued a riposte online, which you can see below.
It’s not a matter of not wanting to fight, I committed my whole life to this trade. The issue is not being able to go anywhere else. @espn
— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) June 8, 2020
“It’s not a matter of not wanting to fight, I committed my whole life to this trade. The issue is not being able to go anywhere else,” Jones wrote.
His comments reference the fact that the UFC will still hold a fighter’s contractual rights should they opt to retire, and that fighters (who are independent contractors) are unable to sign with a rival promotion unless they are granted a full release by the UFC. Several other fighters have also raised this issue in recent days.