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The Best Fighter’s in the UFC by Julian Oddo and Ben Sparks

All stats are courtesy of UFC.comJulian Oddo-

At this time there is no question in my mind that Jon Jones is the best fighter in the UFC. In 2011 Jon Jones had one of the best years a UFC fighter has ever had winning  4 fights including three title fights against UFC legends in the Light Heavyweight Division the deepest division in the UFC.

Jones won the title by beating defending UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Mauricio Rua at UFC 128. Rua one of the best strikers in the UFC only landed 9 punches on Jones while Jones landed an incredible 75 over the course of three rounds before the ref finally stopped the fight.

Jones made his first title defense against  former champion Rampage Jackson a fighter with incredible one punch knockout power.However Jones once again dominated not only out-striking Jackson 61 to 16 but taking Jackson to the ground with authority and submitting him in the fourth round.

Jones most recent fight was against former champion Lyota Machida arguably the best outside fighter in the UFC at UFC 140.Against Machida Jones had to face adversity losing the first round as Machida kept Jones off tempo with his outside strikes .However Machida’s punches didn’t really hurt Jones as Jones adjusted to Machida and submitted Machida in the second round (knocking him unconscious in the process).

At the end of 2011 not only is Jones the best fighter in the UFC but he’s only 24 (which for a UFC fighter is a baby) which means he can still improve.Jon Jones as a fighter has so many weapons in his arsenal its scary.

Jones’s main-stray is his long reach which is the longest in the whole UFC which allows him to put it simply be able to hit you from farther way than you the distance you hit you from.This combined with his freakish athleticism allows him to utterly dominate his opponents at striking as it’s so easy for him to land punches on his opponents while it’s so hard for his opponents to hit him.

Jones has never been taken down successfully before in his entire career yet can take down his opponents  with ease and submit them brutality.However the most important stat of all is that Jones is  15-1(the one loss being by disqualification in that fight Jones outstruck his opponent 44 TO 5 in one round).Jones has never been taken down in his entire career and has beaten three UFC legends with three completely different skill sets.

Great Fighters like Anderson Silva and George St-Pierre show weaknesses in their fights while Jon Jones doesn’t.George-St Pierre was knocked out by Matt Serra back at UFC 83 while at UFC 117 Chael Sonnen beat Anderson Silva to a bloody pulp  before Silva somehow found a way to submit Sonnen in the closing seconds of the final round.

Also despite their recent dominance both Silva and St-Pierre have lost in the distant past to fighters in divisions where the level of competition is far inferior to that of the Light Heavyweight Division where Jones currently resides.The Light Heavyweight Division is stocked with legendary fighters.Even after wasting the likes of Rua,Jackson and Machida there’s still great fighters like Dan Henderson,Rashad Evans,Phil Davis,Forrest Griffin and Thiago Sylvia to at least attempt to provide Jones with a bit of adversity.Silvia and St-Pierre on the other hand have already long cleaned out their divisions of any real threats with St Pierre having avenged his defeats against Matt Hughes and Matt Serra and Silvia having beaten his predecessor on the Middleweight throne Rich Franklin twice.

With the exception of Sonnen who when finally granted a rematch with Sylvia will probably win seeing the level of dominance he showed in their fight the first time around there are no real threats to their belts for either Silvia or St-Pierre.The only way Silvia and St-Pierre can be considered the best ahead of Jones is to fight and trounce some great opponents the way Jones did in 2011.Either St-Pierre should climb to Middleweight to challenge Silvia or Silvia should jump  to Light Heavyweight to fight the seemingly endless list of quality opponents or champion Jon Jones himself.

In a fight against Jones Silva would stand no chance.Jones would be able to use his ridiculous  long reach to keep Silva at bay from the outside and since Jones is practically impossible to take down Silva will have to try to do what Rua,Jackson and Machida couldn’t and that means not only hitting Jones not only hurting him but knocking him out with one of the scarce few punches that he’ll actually land.I’m not criticising either Silva or St-Pierre as both are great fighters who have annihilated their divisions I’m just saying there not nearly as good as Jon Jones.

Jon Jones is a freak of nature who only comes around once in a lifetime.It is very likely that ten years from now Jon Jones will be what Michael Jordan is to Basketball what Jerry Rice is to football and what Babe Ruth is to Baseball an athlete whose talents no one in their sport could would and probably never will achieve.As fans of the UFC we should all be privileged to watch  Jon Jones fight because fighters with his talent and ability rarely come around.

Benjamin Sparks- okay now exactly where do i began should i start with the fact that Jon Jones has absolutely no knockout power and couldn’t even hurt Anderson Silva unless it was with a knee or elbow which Silva is just to elusive to be caught with, or how seasoned and experienced Anderson Silva is. everyone claims that Jon Jones has gone through adversity but losing one round and just barely losing it is not adversity at all, Jon Jones would not know what to do in a situation where someone had him hurt and at a moment of weakness something that someone with the one punch knockout power of Anderson Silva possesses.

lets not forget that Anderson Silva is one of the only two people to ever drop Chris Leben with just punches and Chris Leben is known for having a granite chin. lets also not forget the stiff right hand jab that Silva knocked Forrest Griffin out with while deftly dodging griffins aggresive punches. Jon Jones does not have anywhere near the skill to submit Anderson Silva and if Jon Jones took Anderson Silva down Anderson would do what he did to Chael Sonnen despite Chael beating on him for the majority of the fight, he would severely cut him with elbows from the bottom, Jon Jones has never been hurt or cut and would most likely crumble because of the pressure that it would put him under.

Anderson Silva has countless times overcome adversity and pulled victory out of crushing defeat and if Jon Jones did manage to hurt Anderson then he knows how to keep a level head and to strategically overcome the obstacles before him. on another note Jon Jones has done absolutely nothing that Anderson hasn’t done to numerous opponents. Anderson has submitted more quality opponents then jon jones has ever faced, he has knocked out more people in half his career then jon jones has in his entire ufc run plus Anderson constantly does things that no one has ever seen before, like recently when Anderson knocked vitor belfort out who is a more quality opponent then jon jones has ever faced, back to the point Anderson knocked him out with a lightning fast and very powerful front kick which was mostly utilized for the body and has never been known to knock people out.

also back in cage rage when  Anderson Silva was able to knock his opponent out with a standing back elbow something that has not been done in the entire history of mma. also back when Anderson fought yushin okami for the first time(and lost because of dq) and knocked him out while he was on his back with a heel kick to the face.
anderson is constantly doing new things and he is already considered to mma what micheal jordan is to basketball.

now lets talk about the opponents that the ufc has desperately thrown at jon jones,in jon jones first fight which so called “opened peoples eyes” was against stephan bonnar a scrappy brawler who was obviosly going to have no tools against the diverse striking of one such as jon jones also stephan bonnar was cut from the ufc shortly after because of a string of bad fights. next there was brandon vera who like jones had shown potential but after a string of defeats especially the crushing defeat he had to thiago silva he too was cut from the ufc( though reinstated a couple of months later).and shogun who jon jones crushingly defeated for the title has shown severe sighns of aging in his last couple of fights, his cardio and chin just haven’t been what they used be and he is also severely slowing down with his punches and with the pace he puts on. then there is of course rampage who got a title shot after winning a controversial decision over lyoto machida which was his first fight after his crushing loss to Rashad Evans and also after defeating matt hammil who of course has no answer for rampage  in the standup so all rampage had to do was stop the takedown which he obviously wouldn’t have been able to do tho jon jones. needless to say how rampage got a title shot in the first place is beyond me.

one of jon jones only game opponents that he has fought was lyoto machida who has had many unlucky losses in the past and who also likes to play the distance game which because of jon jones reach no one has  chance with that. jon jones has never fought anybody who is as hard to hit as anderson silva anderson silva doesnt play the distance game and run away like lyoto machida he runs into the pocket and just fluently weaves everything thrown at him, a skill that he so expertly established in the fight against griffin. anderson is not afraid to take a hit and in a fight against jones would just dash into the pocket and deftly weave everything thrown at him and use his perfect speed and unfailable accuracy that he is known for, add that one punch knockout power and the abiltiy to submit jones plus hit jones with a variety of knees and elbows that none of jons past opponents have been able to deliver, put all of these things together and it equals jon jones first legitamate loss and the reason why anderson silva is currently the best fighter in the ufc.

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