UFC 145 was supposed to be Jon “Bones” Jones toughest bout to date as he squared off against the #1 contender and his former training partner Rashad Evans. Las Vegas wasn’t buying into the hype of this match though, listing Jones as a staggering -575 favorite. Evans at +375 looked like a pretty lucrative bet but his backers would soon find out investing their money with Bernie Madoff would’ve paid off more. Here is a round by round recap from my point of view.
Evans made his way to the octagon first and he looked focused, if not nervous. This wasn’t immediately noticeable until “Bones” Jones entrance where he nonchalantly strolled to the cage, at one point I think he signed a baby and sipped a fan’s beer. The glove touch was pretty tense as Evans thought for a split second about pulling a “Belichick” and just walking away but he begrudgingly accepted. Both men started off in the 3-point stance that they say they patented and we were underway.
Bones Jones has a 9-1/2″ reach advantage and is almost 5″ taller and this would prove to be insurmountable for Evans from almost the get-go. Rashad can’t even get in range to try a take down and Joe Rogan states that Jones has only been on the ground a total of 30 seconds in his UFC career…unbelievable. Evans finally lands a head kick at the end of the round but in the replays it looked and sounded much worse than it actually was…Jones has this round.
The announcers state that Jones has an 84″ reach, that’s like having Shaquille O’Neal on your shoulders whereas Evans looks like his reach is akin to Webster. At about midway through the 2nd Evans blows Jones a kiss and wipes his rear end, pretty bold move for a guy that is starting to show an identical imprint to Jones’ elbows on his right eyebrow. Jones’ elbows are very innovative as he lunges at you with a kick/punch combo and almost throws the elbows at the end as an afterthought. I’m pretty sure Evans’ corner knows a TKO is coming because they have all the intensity of a golf caddie right now…”C’mon but, do it if you want…or whatever.”
Evans lands a solid right hook that stuns Bones for a second but Jones regains composure to throw another arsenal of elbows, kicks, knees, and punches. I’d almost let them hit my face to knock me out because it looks and sounds like it even hurts to block them. Evans didn’t win this round but he probably lost it less.
Evans knows he’s down and I thought he’d come out with some desperate haymakers here but he just looks too winded. Jones’ corner reiterates the point to have fun out there…have fun? Evans corner on the other hand is begging him to get in position for an axe kick, I’m just guessing if I can here them yell that Jon “Bones” Jones isn’t going to be too surprised by it either. It’d be like Rex Ryan yelling out on a megaphone for Tim Tebow to run the statue of liberty play.
The only question left is if Jones will knock Evans out because if this goes to decision, it’s going to be a landslide and Evans is way too winded to get a finishing shot on Bones. Jones did pull his guard at about :30 left which almost gave Joe Rogan a stroke but I guess he was having fun out there.
Jones won the decision, 49-46, 49-46, and 50-45. Evans was pretty humbled in the post-fight interview and Jones didn’t even really seem winded. Prolonged title reigns are hard to come by in the UFC but Jones could be in line for a Honky Tonk Man styled Intercontinental Title run of years. Bones is just turning 25 and his style doesn’t put a lot of wear and tear on the body. His size and athleticism is legendary and he’s only getting better. He could stay in the light heavyweight division for years and pummel everybody but he might have to get heavier to see any real competition in the future. Either way, Dana White is getting $65 from me every Jones fight here on out.
Other notes from the night…
The Hominick – Yagin fight was a pretty good one for the 2nd fight of the night. Both fighters were bloody messes by the end of round 3 and Yagin ended up winning a split decision as a 6:1 underdog.
Rory MacDonald is gonna be a superstar. This kid’s only 22 and he’s mentored by Georges St. Pierre. He made his opponent Che Mills look like he was plucked out of the crowd…which he might’ve been.
I like Ben Rothwell. Having lived near Wisconsin for awhile this is exactly the type of shaved grizzly bear you see at the bars on a typical Saturday (Tuesday, Monday, Thursday) night. His highlights showed a blob of a man who looked like nothing more than a bar fighter but he’s really whipped himself into shape. He looked like Homer Simpson brushing off a hard shot by Drederick Tatum only to calmly knock his opponent out cold without skipping a beat.
I’m ready for UFC 146.