Former UFC light-heavyweight champion, Daniel Cormier, discusses his views on Jon Jones being in the running for ESPN’s MMA fighter of the year — suggesting teammate, Islam Makhachev should be greatly considered.
After several years and countless rumours, Jones made a triumphant return to the UFC, making quick work of former UFC interim heavyweight champion, Ciryl Gane, in the first round. With the victory, Jones became the unified UFC heavyweight champion and also a select few of fighters who have won belts in multiple weight classes.
Daniel Cormier makes the case for an Islam Makhachev award
While Jones’s achievements are certainly deserving of praise, former opponent and now UFC commentator, Daniel Cormier, doesn’t think he deserves the ESPN Fighter Of The Year award — preferring AKA training partner, Islam Makhachev, instead.
“I just don’t know if one fight in the year against Ciryl Gane puts you in that position,” Cormier said on his ESPN podcast show “DC & RC.” “And that’s no knock on Ciryl. It was just one fight. You gotta think of the storylines that follow these other athletes. From Islam Makhachev beating ‘Do Bronx’ (Oliveira) to win the belt, from Islam Makhachev beating Alexander Volkanovski. (H / T MMA Junkie)
“I think Jones needed one more performance to find himself in the running for an ESPY,” Cormier continued. “The storyline just doesn’t add up.”
While Cormier recognises Jones’ accomplishment, the former Olympian feels ‘Comeback Fighter of The Year is more suited.
“I agree with that: Jon Jones best comeback athlete, yes,” Cormier said. “I’m all in on that. Three years away, comes back and becomes the heavyweight champion of the world, absolutely, yes.”
Daniel Cormier talks on his podcast DC & RC discussing if Jon Jones deserves an ESPN Fighter of The Year Award
Do you agree with Daniel Cormier or does Jon Jones deserve fighter of the year award from ESPN?