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By: Tony Becerra, MMATorch Contributor
UFC 159 wrapped up last night and in the main event, Jonny "Bones" Jones retained the UFC Light Heavyweight title by defeating Chael Sonnen via TKO in the first round. In case you missed the press conference that followed the event, MMATorch has got you covered with the recap. We have a lot to cover, from Chael Sonnen being seconds away from leaving as the new Light Heavyweight Champion, to Anderson Silva's desired next opponent, so let's get started:
UFC 159 Awards: (Each fighter receiving 65K each for their efforts)
* Fight of the Night: Miller vs. Healy
* Knockout of the Night: Roy Nelson
* Submission of the Night: Pat Healy
Dana White was accompanied by seven fighters at the UFC 159 post-fight press conference: Pat Healy, Phil Davis, Chael Sonnen, Jon Jones. Roy Nelson, Sara McMann and Michael Bisping. Dana White asked the media to direct questions to Jon Jones first so that he could leave to receive medical attention for his broken toe. In case you missed it, check out the link for the picture of Jones' broken toe (Warning: Graphic).
Jon Jones responds to whether or not he thought the fight was stopped prematurely:"No, I…I…To be honest with you I felt as if the fight was stopped a little on the early side you know… a lot of times when you get a fighter ground and pounding another fighter… the fighter gasses himself out trying to finish the fight, I was definitely trying to finish the fight and I was also trying to be a warrior and not gas myself out... and then it was over… you know… I don't want to get the referee into anything but I think Chael could have had a little more time to survive."
Jones continued to answer questions about his reign as Light Heavyweight Champion, thanking Tito Ortiz for paving the way for fighters like him. With this victory Jon has tied the all-time record in defenses in the light heavyweight division. In subsequent answers to questions Jon said he has already fought Lyoto Machida and would like to fight Alexander Gustafsson next. He took a minute to answer on his two-year reign and how things have changed before leaving to seek medical attention.
Commentary: Whether you saw Jones' toe or not, he was very close - in fact seconds - from losing the belt to Chael Sonnen ala Randy Courture when he lost to Vitor Belfort at UFC 46 due to an inadvertent eye poke. When asked about the idea that he could have lost the belt, Jones claimed his coaches would not have allowed him to lose that way, referencing the armed forces and what they go through in an effort to minimize his injury. Dana interjected by stating it's "Just a fact" that the doctors would have stopped the fight because Jon's bone was out of his toe. Now can you imagine the carnage that would have come about a result like that? Who knows if Chael would have used it to his advantage. Chael said he knew he was beat and if he did win in that fashion it would only be right that Jon Jones got an immediate rematch.
Chael Sonnen:"I've had a lot of fights and a lot have not gone my way but I've only been beat up twice and that was number two and he beat me at my own game."
Chael seemed dejected and his body language was not congruent with his the way he answered questions which leads me to believed he definitely had a lot on his mind. Chael answered more about his love for the business and how now there are opportunities for fighters outside of the cage that his predecessors did not have, referring to his broadcasting duties. When asked about who is the better fighter Anderson or Jon, Chael tried to stay away from "disparaging" Anderson Silva by simply stating, "If you're asking for my opinion, Jon is better." Later in the press conference, Chael responded to a questions that prompted talk of an Anderson-Jones fight, to which Chael said Anderson and Jon should be calling each other to want to fight but won't do it. Dana White interjected saying "Anderson called and wants a fight tonight…Anderson Called tonight and wants a fight" … when asked to Clarify if it was between St. Pierre and Jones Dana White simply replied "Yes."
Commentary: Who wouldn't feel bad after losing back-to-back title fights in different divisions. Not likely that he'll get another shot at any title in the UFC and he and everybody knows it. Now the talk of an Anderson Silva and Jon Jones fight will continue. Even though Dana didn't want to say anything I don't think Anderson is looking to fight GSP. In fact, I think after seeing Jon Jones dominate Chael Sonnen like he did, Anderson wants to move up to fight Jones at 205 in a Champion vs. Champion Super fight.
Roy Nelson: "I think I've demonstrated that I can knock people out and fans love it."
Roy Nelson will fight either Mark Hunt or Daniel Cormier next, according to Dana White. Roy seemed excited about the opportunity saying he wants to be the best in the world.
Commentary: Roy Nelson has had an up and down relationship with Dana White, but it looks like things have been getting better. With Roy's dominant performance it's only a matter of time before he is fighting to be the number one contender, and it may be as soon as his next fight.
Pat Healy: "I thought I fought my fight and I don't think anyone at 155 can out grind me."
Pat responded to questions about all of the Strikeforce fighters and how he believes they have come in and proved themselves in the UFC. He stated that no one really believed in his abilities, saying that he's had to endure this type of criticism his entire career. By the way, if you didn't notice, Healy received two bonuses last night, which Dana White quickly pointed out to him.
Commentary: Pat has worked hard to get to where he is and he definitely talked like a man with a chip on his shoulder. Suffice to say he came in and took care of business against Jim Miller and I wouldn't mind seeing his fight against Gilbert Melendez rebooked in the UFC.
Michael Bisping: "I've just got to keep improving…I've got to find a good head coach, I'm my own head coach."
Bisping stated that he wished he could finish the fight but remained fairly respectfully towards Alan Belcher despite all of the trash talk. He continued to answer questions about his camp and what changes needed to be made, how he's 34 and very hungry, eluding to the obvious goal which is to fight for the UFC Gold.
Commentary: Michael Bisping has been very close to fighting for UFC Gold losing to Sonnen and most recently Belfort where there was a good chance that with a victory he would have faced Anderson Silva next. As it stands Bisping is training in the states and is looking to improve his game the best way he can. I think he has a good attitude and with a few more solid victories his dream of fighting for the title may come to fruition.
Sara McMann: "I felt shockingly good."
Sara talked more about the "Octagon Jitters" and trying to find parallels between competing in the Olympics and the UFC.
Commentary: Another WMMA bout and another finish, enough said.
Phil Davis: "I'd like to get back in the in mix… in contendership mix"
Questions focused on Phil's camp and how he's turned things around in light of recent stories that have come out in the media. Phil continued to talk about how it took some time to develop his skills and believes that he is there now. Furthermore, saying how things weren't personal between he and Vinny.
Commentary: It wasn't too long ago that people were saying Phil Davis was the next potential challenger to Jon Jones Championship and I think with this victory he is headed back in the right direction.
There you have it Folks!
Next Up: UFC on FX 8 "Belfort vs. Rockhold"
[Jon Jones art by Grant Gould (c) MMATorch.com]
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