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Jon Jones And Daniel Cormier Will Fight At UFC 200

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Okay, so, last month, Conor McGregor, the UFC’s featherweight champion and biggest drawing card, lost to lightweight Nate Diaz, a late replacement for McGregor’s originally-scheduled opponent, lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos, in a welterweight fight; the UFC, smelling money, booked a McGregor vs. Diaz rematch for July’s UFC 200 extravaganza, which they’re promoting as their biggest ever; McGregor then announced his retirement; it turned out that he wasn’t really retired, but had been pulled off the card for not wanting to fly from Iceland to Las Vegas to do a couple of pressers he could as well have done via Skype; it further turned out, unsurprisingly, that the real conflict was in fact about McGregor wanting money and power and using his status as the UFC’s biggest drawing card, set to headline a big-money show, to make a play for it; McGregor announced that he was back on the card after all; the UFC denied it; the UFC sent a delegation to Good Morning America, of all places, this morning, and announced that the new main event for UFC 200 will be a rematch of a Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier fight from last year, which was originally scheduled for this past weekend until Cormier was injured in training and carries its own strange complications, among them that even though Jones convincingly defeated Cormier in their last fight and has in fact never lost a fight (not counting one he lost on a technicality), Cormier is the (fake) light-heavyweight champion because the UFC stripped Jones of the title after he hit a pregnant woman’s car with his own and then fled the scene—after which Jones was spotted running back to his car, shoving cash in his pants, and then fleeing again (which events followed on him vanquishing an alleged substance abuse problem in 24 hours after a series of events too complicated to recount here)—and then put the light-heavyweight title, or anyway a light-heavyweight title, up for grabs between Cormier and Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, a notably awful person; in all, the real champion is the challenger here, and the fake challenger is the champion, and the two are fighting in July, specifically, because UFC figurehead Dana White and his bosses want to make the point that no fighter, no matter how popular, is too big to be subordinated to the UFC and its imperatives; for all that, this is an excellent thing because the fake champion is the true no. 1 contender for Jones’s non-existent championship by any measure, and while Cormier couldn’t match Jones’s stamina in the last bout, Jones has been powerlifting recently, which has cut down on his own stamina and may lead to this being a straight test of technique, intelligence, and heart, one in which Cormier wouldn’t be favored, but could win.


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Tim Marchman

Editor at Special Projects Desk