Jon Jones Took His ‘Ground Game To The New Level’ And ‘Feeling Like A Whole New Animal’
Jon Jones returned to Octagon last December after serving out a drug test suspension and went on to captured a vacant UFC light heavyweight title at UFC 232 after defeating formal rival Alexander Gustafsson via third-round TKO in a rematch of their classic 2013 title spectacle. Currently, he’s slated to defend his title against Anthony Smith at UFC 235, which take place March 2nd from inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
A few weeks back the Jackson-Wink product Jon Jones said he would not underestimate ‘Lionheart’ regardless of he’s a massive betting favorite heading into their clash.
“It’s flattering, but at the end of the day it’s a very dangerous position to be in,” Jones said at the UFC 235 press conference in Las Vegas (h/t MMAjunkie). “When you are fighting a guy no one expects to win as the favorite you have to be smart enough and mature enough to stay at the drawing board, stay in practice, take your opponent very seriously. I take Anthony Smith extremely serious. He has 40 fights, double the fights I have. He’ll get my full, undivided attention.”
On Thursday Jones took to his Instagram and shared his training experience at Gracie Barra Albuquerque and credited BJJ specialist Roberto Alencar and MMA coach Greg Jackson for helping him sharpening his ground game.
“My brothers over at @graciebarraabq were awesome today! I feel like my ground game is by far the best it’s ever been. Thank you so much @tussagb You have 1000% taking my ground game to the next level. Shout out to @gregjacksonmma for all the time he’s invested in me on the ground. Together we were able to accomplish having the most submissions ever scored in UFC light heavyweight history and now I’m feeling like a whole new animal, it’s all very exciting. I’m really enjoying the way these two amazing coaches have been able to collaborate. Surrounded by the best. #SquadUp”
Meanwhile, Anthony Smith is currently on a three-fight win streak, earned over the likes of Rashad Evans, Maurício Rua, and Volkan Oezdemir last year. He’s over 44-13 with eight knockout and four submission losses in his kitty.
Jones already said he wants to fight three times this year and wants to prove everyone that he’s still the best in the game. He’s overall (25-23) with ten knockouts, six submissions and seven decision wins. By looking at his post, how he’s honing his skills could be a pretty scary thing for the future opponents but let’s just say how Smith will deal him.
So who do you think will emerge victoriously at UFC 235 when Jones and Smith clash?