Michael Bisping respects Daniel Cormier’s opinions on most things, but when it involves Jon Jones he thinks his years-long beef with the former UFC light heavyweight champion takes the objectivity out of his analysis.
Cormier made headlines on Wednesday when he explained during his “DC & RC“ podcast that he didn’t think his old rival Jones could win heavyweight gold.
“I believe that Jon Jones will fight at heavyweight and he’ll fight for the belt, but he’ll lose to Ciryl Gane or Francis Ngannou. I just think with the time away, with the weight difference, and those guys being who they are, that it’s just that these guys are a different level of heavyweight,” he said.
Well, in a new video post to his YouTube channel, former UFC middleweight champion Bisping disagreed with his fellow ESPN analyst. First, explaining that he believes the long-held hate between the two — built over two title fights — has a strong influence on Cormier’s opinion of Jones and his plans to compete at heavyweight.
Michael Bisping says hate has an influence on Daniel Cormier’s opinions on Jon Jones
“I’ve got to disagree with Daniel Cormier here. Sorry, Daniel. You’re my friend, but it’s just a discussion on YouTube. Don’t be offended. DC’s opinion on this is certainly one that has to be listened to,” Bisping said about the former two-division champion. “But because he does know him because he does have that history because they don’t like one another, I believe that maybe that’s skewing the judgment of DC a little bit here.”
Jones and Cormier’s feud began in the lead-up to their 2015 title fight at UFC 182. It included a pre-fight brawl and some harsh verbal sparring. Jones would go on to win by unanimous decision. A rematch would take two years to manifest, after two failed bookings and “Bones’” personal life started to become a hindrance on his career. Jones would also win that fight by technical knockout, but the result was overturned when Jones tested positive for performance enhancers.
Cormier would go on to regain the light heavyweight title, and then make history in being only the second man to move up to heavyweight and win that title as well.
Bisping believes that Jones’ plans to match what Cormier has done is likely impacting his friend’s thoughts. Nevertheless, “The Count” says Jones’ resume as one of the greatest to ever compete in cage fighting should be reason enough to never doubt his chances of being the UFC heavyweight champion.
“Now Jon Jones, his old rival, he’s stepping up to heavyweight and he’s trying to do what DC did. And because DC doesn’t like him, he’s like, ‘Nah, he’s not gonna be able to do that.’ He’s saying that he’s been away from the sport for too long. There’s gonna be ring rust and those two are a different breed of heavyweight,” said Bisping. “And maybe he’s right. But let’s dissect Jon Jones a little bit here. Regardless of his behavior outside of the Octagon, which hasn’t been great, and regardless of the steroid tests, it’s a massive asterisk, but the reality is if you look at the performances, he potentially is the greatest of all time.
“He’s not even 35 yet so there’s no way he’s gonna show up “old.” Now he’s got a problem. Ciryl Gane [and] Francis Ngannou are unbelievable,” he continued. “They’re gonna fight next weekend, I don’t know who’s gonna win that fight. But still, Jon Jones has a resume. Jon Jones is one of the best to ever do it. So to say he can’t come back after this time and beat those guys, I don’t think I agree. I’m not saying he is gonna win, but to say he has no chance I don’t think that’s right.”
Do you agree with Bisping and Cormier’s opinion of Jones is swayed by his hate?