Chael Sonnen has said that Jon Jones and Sergei Pavlovich might headline pay per view in Sydney, Australia at UFC 293. Sonnen heard strong rumours that Jones and Miocic are off and Pavlovich is being pursued by the UFC to fight Jon “Bones” Jones for the Heavyweight title.
Jon Jones is easily the greatest fighter of all time and it’s really not a contest. He had so many indiscretions outside the cage, and it had created a bad image for him in the past. Nevertheless, the record of dominance within the fighting surface itself is simply unimpeachable.
Jon Jones is the most accomplished MMA fighter of all time. Jon Jones won the UFC Light Heavyweight title in 2011 and from them on has fought more championship fights than he has other fights. He beat Mauricio “Shogun” Rua who is a legend. He dominated all his opponents up until he faced Alexander Gustaffson for the first time. He destroyed Rampage Jackson, Rashad Evans, Lyoto Machida and Daniel Cormier.
Stipe Miocic has not fought in the UFC since a knockout loss to Francis Ngannou on Marcg 27, 2021. Jones who was on a three-year hiatus most recently fought Ciryl Gane at UFC 260 in a fight where he won by first round submission to claim the vacant undisputed heavyweight championship.
In the meantime, Russian Slugger, Sergei Pavlovich has been on a roll. He knocked out his last six opponents in the first round, the last three of them being Derrick Lewis, Tai Tuivasa and Curtis Blaydes.
It’s become a bit of a familiar sight seeing Sergei Pavlovich lay out Heavyweights, it’s not actually been that surprising. His First year as a pro, he knocked out six people in the first round and he went to the Russian promotion, Fight Nights Global where in just one year, he won the Heavyweight title. The only blemish in his career is a ground and pound loss to Alistair Overeem in his UFC debut.
Pavlovich is 30 years old and has the biggest ape index of any fighter in Mixed Martial Arts. He has won his last six fights by knockout all in the first round. Sergei has speed, power, explosiveness and good takedown defense.
Matt Brown believes that Sergei Pavlovich is going to be the UFC heavyweight champion. Certainly, it’s not out of the realm of possibility. He is much closer to his fighting prime than Stipe Miocic and Jon Jones. Pavlovich’s next fight would certainly be a title fight.
State of the division and impending Pavlovich Juggernaut
Stipe Miocic has been in a scheduling cycle where he is fighting only one’s a year or not even competing in a year. His whole trilogy with Daniel Cormier took place over three years and he didn’t fight anybody else while Cormier fought Derrick Lewis in the middle of that series. The most reliable guy right now in this heavyweight equation is Sergei Pavlovich.
Jones is the greatest mixed martial artist of all time, he’s on the Mount Rushmore of MMA. Pondering the idea of Jones losing a fist fight, a certain type of fighter comes to mind.
It’s not going to be the guy who stands on the outside and looks to manage distance well and outpoint the champion. Ciryl Gane, Lyoto Machida, Ovince St, Preux and Anthony Smith tried and failed fighting at distance.
It’s certainly not going to be the grappler who looks to control Jones up against the cage or take him down and grind out a decision. Daniel Cormier tried and failed, Vitor Belfort hyperextended the elbow joint of Jones and he still refused to tap.
Jon Jones has been dragged into a brawl by Gustaffson, Santos and Reyes. Jones was forced onto the backfoot on those fights. Sergei Pavlovich is a brawler, a sizeable adversary with some serious knockout power. This is what makes the fight with Jon Jones that much interesting, he has the power to knock “Bones” out.