Dana White: ‘If Jon Jones Is Ready To Fight’ By July’s UFC 214, He’ll Face Daniel Cormier
Dana White Says Jon Jones Could Fight Daniel Cormier at UFC 214
The UFC president told ESPN.com that should former light heavyweight champion Jones (22-1) be prepared to fight by UFC 214 on July 29, he could face off against defending champion Daniel Cormier at the highly anticipated event in Anaheim, California, if Jones is interested, of course.
Jones, 29, is serving a one-year suspension for a failed drug test, a ban which ends the first week of July.
If Jones needs more time or wants a practice fight first, White said, 38-year-old Cormier (19-1) could fight British contender Jimi Manuwa (17-2), potentially at UFC 213 on July 8 in Las Vegas.
“Cormier is available to fight on July 8, but that time frame doesn’t work for Jon Jones,” White said. “Cormier already told me he’s willing to fight either Jones or Manuwa.
“If Jon Jones is ready to fight [by UFC 214] on July 29, we’ll see the Jones versus Cormier rematch, finally.”
Jones’ agents have not yet commented.
The UFC took Jones’ 205-pound championship belt away in 2015 for disciplinary reasons. Earlier that year, Jones had defended his title an eighth time, and beat Cormier via unanimous decision at UFC 182.
A rematch between the two was originally set to be held at UFC 197 in April 2016, but Cormier was forced to withdraw because of a knee injury. Another Cormier vs. Jones rematch was scheduled to headline UFC 200 last July in Vegas, but the latter fighter was pulled from the event due to his failed drug test.
Jone received the suspension from the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) after testing positive for estrogen blockers he later said came from an unmarked sexual enhancement pill.
Though Jones’ situation remains uncertain, Cormier and Manuwa have recently exchanged verbal jabs and taunts on social media to promote a possible fight.
Cormier tweeted at Manuwa on Monday, “Let’s go! I wanna fight you! Jones needs to get his sea legs back. Where’s the contract. This [is] light work.”
“Jimi wants Cormier,” White said. “They got into it at UFC 210 [earlier this month] and Jimi told me he’s never been talked to like that before. We’ll see how this plays out.”
LAS VEGAS, NV – JANUARY 03: Light heavyweight champion Jon Jones waits in a timeout as he defends his title against Daniel Cormier during the UFC 182 event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on January 3, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Jones retained his title by unanimous decision. (Photo by Steve Marcus/Getty Images)