On yesterday’s media conference call promoting the upcoming UFC 128: Shogun vs. Jones fight card, light heavyweight champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and challenger Jon “Bones” Jones both discussed the fact that the 23-year old Jones has been chosen as the favorite in the bout by oddsmakers.
For his part, “Shogun” says that he understands and agrees with the fact that Jones is the favorite and – whether it’s a device he’s using to take the pressure off of his own shoulders or an honest admission – Rua believes his casting in the role of the underdog is accurate.
“I actually understand that people think he’s the favorite for the fight because he has been winning all his fights easily,” Rua said. “I certainly think he is rightfully the favorite for the fight. I understand why people think that and how they view that, and I truly consider myself the underdog.”
Jones, on the other hand, finds it ludicrous that he has been pegged as the odds-on favorite and thinks the current betting line to be a slightly dubious ploy on the part of the oddsmakers.
“The fact that I’m the favorite, I think that’s balogna,” said Jones. “I think the reason that I’m the favorite is oddsmakers are very smart and they probably think I’m going to lose. I think it’s a smart strategy on the oddsmakers’ part by making me the favorite. So the fact that I’m the favorite actually means that they think I’m going to lose. That’s the way I’m looking at it. I feel as if I’m the underdog. ‘Shogun’s’ beaten lots of big names.”
Regardless of their ascribed statuses, Jones and Rua will both be looking for wins when they meet on the 19th of this month at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey to decide the owner of the light heavyweight championship.