Francis Ngannou installed himself as ‘The Most dangerous Man On The Planet’ on Saturday night when he KO’d Stipe Miocic to lift the heavyweight title, and though there had been an expectation pre-fight that Jon Jones would be next in line to fight the winner of that match-up, the ex-light-heavyweight champ has now made it clear it all hinges on the size of his payday.
Jones pushed the financial argument on Saturday night after Dana White made it clear at the UFC 260 post-fight press conference that he’s highly skeptical that the former 205lb kingpin actually wants to fight Ngannou, even quipping that if he was ‘Bones’ he’d start planning a drop down to 185lbs.
“If anyone is wondering if I really want to fight, the answer is yes,” Jones retaliated on Twitter. “I also really want to get paid. I quit the light heavyweight division, literally gained a massive amount of weight. And now people are saying I’m afraid? Everyone but me claiming that I’m afraid. All I asked was to get paid.
“Why does a fighter have to be afraid the second he mentions he wants to get paid his worth. What an insult. Conor McGregor wants big money, it’s expected. Jon Jones wants money, now he’s scare.
“I’ve been working my butt off, gained all this weight. Have never lost a fight before. Now all of a sudden I am scared. What bullshit.”
As for White’s alternative suggestion that Ngannou could rematch Derrick Lewis instead, Jones suggested he’s in no rush to get the next title shot.
“It’s OK, Derek can have the fight. No need to rush a great thing. I’ve already had a Hall of Fame career, I’m going to need some bread.”
He then returned to the thorny issue of fighter pay.
“I’ve been fighting my whole adult life, this shit just don’t feel right when you feel undervalued. It’s not an issue of wanting to fight. It’s an issue of wanting to be paid better. Let’s make that clear.”
Meanwhile, Jones also cast shade on Stipe Miocic, suggesting that the dethroned champion wasn’t on his level.
“Let’s not forget Stipe lost to DC. Stipe only defended his belt like five times to my 15. The man showed up at 230 to fight against Francis. He is no Jon Jones, I want this fight, excited to see what the UFC think it’s worth.
“You guys get so impressed by the guy with the knockout power. I’ve been proven for over a decade that punching hard means shit. I’ll let all you fans be super hyped, I’ll stick to what I know. Pay me and let me go to work.
“I’ve been talking about getting paid more for over a year now, has nothing to do with France is winning the belt. I fear no man, i’ve been beating up on heavy weight since I was a skinny kid. Gain all this size and strength just to suddenly be afraid? Sure let’s switch narrative.
“Bro I’ve gotten out of the way from much faster punchers. And I have a pretty solid chin. Let’s not forget fight IQ, reach, speed, distance. I’m not going to just stand there like stipe did.”
It wasn’t long before Jones was back to discussing money though, and if there’s one bright side to all this it’s that he also suggested that he was expecting to see a fight proposal this week.
Whether the proposed money on offer will help seal the deal remains to be seen though.
“I always hear about how much the company is growing yet one year later I find myself in the same spot. I put in the work, I’ve done my part. I have completely transformed myself and now I meet a brick wall.. how discouraging.
“If you are a former fighter, who is now a puppet. And you are insinuating that I am afraid because I’m asking for more money. You should be ashamed of yourself, you are part of the problem.
“I am going to try to remain faithful. There’s still time for the UFC to do the right thing. I am supposed to be seeing a fight proposal next week. Fingers are crossed, this is an opportunity of a lifetime for everyone involved.”