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Greg Jackson defends advice he gave to Jones

Greg Jackson defends advice he gave to Jones
August 24th 2012


At the very moment Dana White was telling a furious conference call audience that Greg Jackson is “a f--king sport killer”, his target was on the phone to Mauro Ranallo’s radio show on Sirius Sports in Canada, defending his advice to Jon Jones.

White’s ire was promoted by Jackson telling Jones that to accept Chael Sonnen as a stand-in opponent on eight days notice would be the “worst decision of his career”. Sonnen had been offered after original opponent Dan Henderson was forced out of the September 1 fight with a knee ligament injury.

“I was asked if it was smart to take a fight on three days notice and I don't think it's smart to do that. Three days to fight a guy that caliber is not a smart thing to do. I'm not trying to ruin the sport or cancel an event. I don't know about that stuff, but thought it wasn't a wise course of action,” Jackson told Ranallo.

“It's a serious fight with serious ramifications. I didn't mean to cancel an event and was asked to give an opinion and I gave it.”

Zuffa decided to cancel UFC 151, the first time that a UFC event has ever been cancelled. Coming on eight days notice, the company is now going to take what White terms “a massive financial hit”. 

White has been joined by most fans in decrying Jones and Jackson for not taking Sonnen as a replacement opponent. But Jackson and a minority say that the fact the event had to be cancelled due to Jones not being on it means the card was maybe too thin to begin with.

“I didn't know they had it all riding on one fight. It's one of those things - as a trainer, I'll give you my opinion. I'm not a yes man, I do what's best for my guy. I'm surprised by the veracity of [White’s] response but that's my opinion. In this case, it's a world title fight in the best sport in the world on three days notice. This isn't backyard brawling, it's a professional sport,” Jackson says.

White is unlikely to be moved. He practically roared at conference call listeners as he described Jackson as “a weirdo” and said the two-time Coach of the Year should never be interviewed again “by anybody except a psychiatrist”.

Comments

  • ac

    Posted at 07:29 on August 24th 2012

    to me it seems an unbelievable act of lunacy for Jackson and Jones.
    You cant say "no" if youre asked to save an event of the _only_ major MMA promotion and your only existing employee in the world....

    In some situation this could kill the whole UFC, and then where would Jackson and Jones go? There is no another promotion of this level, there ae no "other fans", cuently UFC _is_ MMA.

    All this becides the fact that there would be all sorts of advantages for Jones against Sonnen. (yes, its not good to be unprepared for exact opponent, but so would be Sonnes)...

    In Russia we say "dont cut the tree on which you're sitting", and I think thats precisely what Jones and Jackson did.

    Reply to comment

  • John505

    Posted at 10:38 on August 24th 2012

    No surprise to me they never took the fight.Jackson and his fighters have been adopting a 'safety first' policy when it comes to fights for years..Case in point,just look how he watered down GSP after the Matt Serra fight,had Guida running away from Maynard all night..I could go on,there are numerous other instances.The only fighter in his camp who goes toe to toe is Cerrone.
    There is the argument for him looking after his fighter with too short notice,and i get that..But it's when his fighters perform in the octagon that annoys me,dull,methodical,safety first attitude !

    Reply to comment

  • Kroko

    Posted at 11:44 on August 24th 2012

    I agree with Jones not fighting Sonnen. Because Sonnen is no CONTENDER!! He just talks bulls* all day long and after losing a title fight he gets already another??? I have never seen this before. That's ridiculous!
    But I agree also with Dana that the champ should accept another challenger (except Sonnen). These guys love to brag "anyone, anytime, anyplace". So where did these guys go?

    Reply to comment

  • Gary

    Posted at 12:52 on August 24th 2012

    I agree that Sonnen doesn't deserve a shot but I think because of his profile and the fact it was so out of the blue in a business sense he would make a lot of money through pay per view. This is why it's so strange because Jones himself recently complained that he wouldn't take the Machida rematch because it was a stinker in terms of pay per view and thus money in his pocket.

    However, Jones and Jackson have done themselves no favours in the eyes of Dana White and the fans. Jones already has a love/hate relationship with the fans and after his DUI and now this he's not going to come out smelling of roses.

    Reply to comment

  • ac

    Posted at 13:14 on August 24th 2012

    Jones n Jackson are as right as a driver who doesn't make a maneuver to avoid collision because "i don't have to, rules say that _they_ should give me way"...

    They were simply too narrow minded to understand that an imperfect situation has _already_ occured and there is no way to return to perfect, you have to make an unusual move and save the day as good as possible or reject taking any additional responsibility and hit into the truck.

    Curious that similary Jon Jones could't change his mind on driving a car once when his condition required him to make a change and take a cab... But this time looks like his trainer was drunk as well)

    Reply to comment

  • Donovan

    Posted at 16:05 on August 24th 2012

    Those ass-clowns should stick to training and not managing. Asshole

    Reply to comment

  • majesty95

    Posted at 16:43 on August 24th 2012

    It's easy to blame Jones and Jackson from the confines of your living room or office. However, you don't fight for a living, aren't a champion and aren't trying to craft a legacy. Sure. Jones takes the fight and wins it helps his legacy some. But what if he loses?

    Sonnen had everything to gain in that fight and Jones had everything to lose. Yes, Dana would've owed him and probably would have payed him well. However, if he lost to Chael what would all of you be saying? That's he's a bum. That he got beat by a middleweight. He's no champion.

    I believe Jones wins that fight 95% of the time with a full camp. However, on short notice, anything can happen. Had it been a non-title fight, sure. Do it. But not for a title. What champion has ever had to do that?

    The fact is, the UFC is watering down their cards and didn't have the drawing power on any of the other fights to withstand losing Jones. They put all their eggs in that basket and it bit them. That's not Jones' fault. He didn't schedule the carr and he shouldn't have had to save it.

    Reply to comment

  • a c

    Posted at 17:35 on August 24th 2012

    Yeah, but haven`t ultimately Jones&Jackson created a very doubtful legacy? Haven`t they actually lost (well, postponed a little) money from this fight, and what is more, probably damaged their sponsors?

    Of course there _was_ some risk of losing to Sonnen. But in that case there surely would an immedeate rematch.

    And there s no need to say "you re not in Jones shoes". If we talk about how the greatest do, look at Klitschko bros:

    In 2000, Chris Byrd stepped in as a replacement to fight Vitali Klitchko in only 1-week notice. He won, he spoiled Vitaly`s perfect 26-0 record. But then he lost to another Klitchko, and since then Vitaly has become one of the greatest of all time with 44–2 current record.

    In 2009, when David Haye pulled out of a fight with Wladimir Klitchko (who had all the legacy and amazing 52–3 record at the moment), Ruslan Chagaev came with only 13-days notice. Wladimir won by "submission" (means Chagaev didn`t return after 9th round because of injuries)

    And this is boxing, where Klitchko fights attract 40+K visitors at stadiums, 10+ million TV audience in Germany alone and some 100+ millions worldwide. Making $10-20+ millions per 1 fight.


    Real champs do not talk about risks and legacies. They come in and take both.

    Reply to comment

  • a c

    Posted at 19:21 on August 24th 2012

    To me this whole thing with JonJones looks like this:

    https://p.twimg.com/A1FYb9GCcAEY-FB.jpg

    Reply to comment

  • mush

    Posted at 04:31 on August 25th 2012

    What world champ would take a fight on such short notice its stupidity you have fight plans for each opponent and have to study fight tapes and develop strategies in training and not worth risking your title because the card wasn't strong enough to survive without him and no major promotion should expect a champion to risk their title also Dan Henderson what a idiot training so hard so close to the event he should be tapering down

    Reply to comment

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