It looks like the genie of Dana White won’t be granting any wishes for Jon Jones.
Dana White said Jones had requested $30 million to fight the Heavyweight champ Francis Ngannou. It looks like Jones has priced himself out with White now moving on from the huge matchup.
Keeping The Budget
The UFC has taken a ‘less-costly’ direction, which is top Heavyweight contender Derrick Lewis.
“We tried to work with Jon,” Dana White said on “The Bill Simmons Podcast.” “We eventually have to move on because realistically, and in all honesty, Derrick Lewis is the guy who deserves the fight,”
“Derrick Lewis is a heavyweight, he beat Francis Ngannou, he’s looked good in his last couple of fights, he’s ranked in the top three, I think, and he deserves the fight. That’s the fight that should happen. We’ll just roll and do what we do.”
Lewis is on a 4-fight win streak and is coming off an insane KO win over the highly-touted Curtis Blaydes. Lewis was also the second and the last fighter to defeat current champ Francis Ngannou inside the Octagon.
What About Jon?
The question that comes into play is, what to do with Jon Jones? The former 2X Light Heavyweight Champion, who is considered by many ‘the greatest of all time’ was offered a title shot right off the bat in his Heavyweight debut. No one, including Lewis, was against him skipping the line.
However, the road to Heavyweight gold wouldn’t be traveled unless there was a guaranteed $30 million purse at the end of it. Dana White is still hopeful he’ll pursue his goals despite not getting paid what he wants.
“When Jon’s ready, he’ll let us know.” White continued. “In his deal, he’s talking he wants $30 million guaranteed. The way that this works is, these guys all share in the pay-per-view. He will share in the profits of the fight. That’s how it works. That’s how you run a business, and you don’t go broke.”
At the end of the day, the UFC is a business, so a $30 million dollar payday wouldn’t exactly do them any favors besides putting one of the biggest fights in UFC history.