Jon Jones Says Staying At Light Heavyweight Wouldn’t Have Helped His Legacy

Jon Jones has gone in-depth on his decision to vacate the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship.

Jones ruled the roost at 205 pounds for many years. “Bones” decided to take the time to bulk up for a move to the heavyweight division. He’s expected to meet the winner of the UFC Heavyweight Title rematch between champion Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou.

“Bones” spoke to Tom Taylor of Bleacher Report months after he made the decision to move to heavyweight. Jones said he feels the timing is right.

“I was just ready to challenge myself. I was ready to enter a new chapter in my career. At this point, I’m in this sport for legacy and for the biggest-paying fights, and I just don’t think that continuing on at light heavyweight was going to do much for my legacy.”

The former light heavyweight ruler went on to say that it’s crucial for other 205-pounders to shine.

“The reason why I decided to vacate the light heavyweight belt and not hang onto it is that I knew my move to heavyweight was going to take a really long time. I didn’t want to be one of those athletes to slow down the division. I feel like I’ve held onto the light heavyweight championship for so long—I’ve ruined so many people’s dreams of being the light heavyweight champion—and now it’s time for someone else to have it.

“I thought it was the right thing to do for everyone else. I could have done the selfish thing and held onto it and come up with a bunch of excuses and lied to the fans and said I was going to come back down to light heavyweight and made all these guys wait. I didn’t want to do that. I have no intentions of ever going back to light heavyweight.”

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