Welterweight title contender Gilbert Burns has voiced his concern at former light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones decision to vacate his belt and move up to heavyweight, suggesting that it could be a big mistake for the star.
“Jon Jones at heavyweight — me? I don’t like that so much,” Burns said on YouTube. “When you have a guy like Francis Ngannou in the heavyweight division, I don’t know. I don’t see an easy path for Jon Jones in the heavyweight division. Or he has to fight Stipe if he Stipe beats Ngannou, Stipe is fighting Jon Jones. But I don’t think that’s going to happen. I think Ngannou is going to defeat Stipe and Ngannou will fight Jon Jones. And I don’t like that fight.
“… I don’t like the what if but what if Jon Jones goes against Francis Ngannou and he’s [Ngannou] going to knock him out badly. How about that? What is Jon Jones going to do? First, when you’re undefeated and you lose, it’s very tough. … If you’re champion, champion, undefeated, undisputed and then you lose badly, I don’t know how that’s going to affect you right here [pointing to the head]. I don’t know about Jon Jones’ future. I think he still has a couple of guys to beat at 205. My opinion — he should fight Adesanya. Stay at 205, beat Jan Blachowicz, beat Santos again, another guy.”
“I don’t know if it’s just me but there’s a lot of bad matchups for him,” Burns continued. “Curtis Blaydes is a wrestler, good striker, hits very, very hard. Then we got Alistair Overeem, they used to train together and Overeem called him out. What does that mean? If the guy called you out and you used to train together, that’s a little confidence at least.
“Overeem, Curtis Blaydes, Francis Ngannou? I don’t know. I got to see it to believe it. But I don’t think it’s a good move for Jon Jones to go up to heavyweight as of right now.”
Despite Burns concerns, Jones appears to be all-in on his move up in weight, and indeed even suggested in recent days that he has no intention of ever returning to the light-heavyweight division that he ruled over for so many years.