Had Chael Sonnen been allowed to continue for just a few more seconds, he could have walked out of UFC 159: Jones vs. Sonnen as the UFC’s newest light heavyweight champion.
While Jon Jones continued to fire down repeated strikes on Sonnen, he was dealing with a dislocated big toe. The referee, though, halted the action and Jones earned the TKO victory.
Had the first round come to a close, and Jones sat down in his corner, the referee or someone from the New Jersey Athletic Commission would have stopped the contest due to the injury. So, would Sonnen have been happy to win the belt via default?
“I would have grabbed that belt, I would have held it up, grabbed the mic and told the crowd the golden rule: ‘He with the gold rules,'” said Sonnen, on UFC Tonight recently, “and I would have walked out of the place and never looked back.”
Sonnen, of course, was also close to claiming the UFC middleweight title several years ago before Anderson Silva locked in a submission. The challenger was well up on the scorecards, but couldn’t fight off the choke.
“Diplomatically you don’t ever want to win that way,” he added. “The ones that hurt are the ones you’re supposed to win and then you blow it.”