It’s hard to believe UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones has only been training in mixed martial arts for around four years. From the way he’s been destroying the 205-pound division, what many consider the deepest weight class in the UFC, one would expect Jones to be right smack in the prime of his career instead of the virtual babe he is in the sport.
The 24-year-old Jones continued his dominating romp through the light heavyweight ranks with a second round submission win over former champion Lyoto Machida in UFC 40.
Unlike many of his fights, Jones struggled in the early goings of the main event, as Machida, true to form, proved elusive and even tagged the champion a few times with hard kicks to the body and quick rushes.
But Jones buckled down in the second round, taking Machida down and opening a nasty cut on Machida’s forehead with a sharp elbow strike. Referee Big John McCarthy momentarily stopped the action to have the gash checked with the ringside doctor but the fight was allowed to continue.
Not that it mattered too much as Jones caught Machida with a standing guillotine choke that sent the Brazilian challenger to sleep.
UFC announcer Joe Rogan called the first round the most adversity that Jones has had to face in the cage. Though Machida never seemed to get Jones hurt, he connected cleanly on a few strikes and made it difficult for Jones to hit him.
But Jones responded with a strong performance in the second round that showed that the talented young fighter had some mental chops to go along with his natural physical gifts.
Jones is now 4-0 in 2011, with three wins coming on submissions and one on a TKO.
It was the first time the light heavyweight belt was successfully defended more than once since Quinton “Rampage” Jackson won the title from Chuck Liddell at UFC 71 in 2007. Jackson and Machida only defended the title once while three other champions lost the title in their first defense.
Jones, who became the youngest champion in UFC history when he finished Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 128 earlier this year, defended the belt against Jackson last September before finishing Machida in a spectacular submission in this fight.
And from the looks of things, it could be quite a long reign for the dominant young champ.