Jon Jones adamant he would never fight Rashad Evans
Jon Jones has risked the wrath of UFC president Dana White by making it clear he will not fight Rashad Evans, even if his team-mate blocks his way to the light-heavyweight title.
Jones is widely recognised as the biggest young talent in the UFC, with 11 wins and one disqualification to his name, and he is tipped to go right to the top of the 205lb division. However, by the time he gets there Jones' team-mate at Greg Jackson's Submission Fighting gym, Rashad Evans, could already be the champion as he prepares to take on current title holder Mauricio Shogun Rua in 2011.
Victory for Evans would leave a dilemma for Jones, much as it would for Jon Fitch if Josh Koscheck beats Georges St-Pierre in December, and like Fitch, Jones admits there is not a chance he would share the same Octagon as his team-mate.
"Absolutely not," he replied when asked by ESPN if he would fight Evans. "If Rashad Evans won the belt, which I'm hoping he does, my only goal would be to be the toughest contender there is, and keep whipping butt without being champion.
"I'd stay at 205 and be the second best. That would be my goal. As I said, I'm hoping he wins, we're very proud of him. I couldn't do it, he's my mate."
Jones, who stands at 6ft 5' boasting an 84½-inch reach, has previously hinted that his long-term future could be at heavyweight. However, any dreams of a shot at Brock Lesnar are some way off admits the flamboyant Greco-Roman wrestler.
"All my dreams and aspirations are in the light-heavyweight division, and I'm growing and getting older, but I have quite some time left in the light-heavyweight division," he said. "I have a good work ethic because of the wrestling, cutting weight comes easily to me, so I'll wait until weight-cutting becomes miserable before I step up."