23-year old wunderkind Jonny “Bones” Jones was awarded the opportunity of his lifetime when he was asked to step in for his teammate, Rashad Evans, after “Suga” injured his knee in training and was forced to pull out of his scheduled title fight against champ Mauricio “Shogun” Rua.
Now, Jones will take on the champion in his teammate’s stead, just over a month removed from his impressive win over Ryan Bader at UFC 126. In Rua, Jones will be facing a dangerous and battle-hardened veteran who has run the gamut of MMA experience from the most intoxicating highs to the most heartbreaking lows. The former Chute Boxe team member has decimated some of the most notable names in the game and looks to have returned to form after several knee injuries had him operating at much less than 100 percent (though he is coming off of a knee injury/surgery layoff now, bringing an extra variable into an already intriguing fight), but Jones is confident in his new breed style and plans on netting a win next weekend.
“Bones” spoke with FightersOnly.com recently, to whom he revealed his plan to use the clinch game to throw Rua around.
“I’m definitely going to embrace the clinch in this fight,” said Jones. “I look at my clinch as a little more active clinch, where I’m always looking for takedowns or different angles or strikes and things. MMA fighters pretty much, once they get into the clinch, they feel as if they’re being dominant by pushing in. And that’s not necessarily being dominant, that’s setting yourself up to be thrown.”
Jones takes on “Shogun” next Saturday night at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Don’t forget to check back on FightLine.com for our live, ongoing coverage of the event.