A career that started out with silver at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul will culminate on UFC Fight Pass this Thursday night, as former boxing world champion Roy Jones Jr. competes for the last time.
Jones, who became the undisputed light heavyweight champion in 1999 when he unified the WBA, WBC and IBF titles, will face Scott Sigmon from the Bay Center in Pensacola, Florida for the WBU cruiserweight title. The bout streams as the main event on the all-digital service.
“This is the first live boxing on UFC Fight Pass. I love being the first to do something, so to be the first boxing event on UFC Fight Pass is cool,” Jones said. “When I turned pro back in 1989, I said I wanted to bring new audiences boxing and that’s what I tried to do. By having my last night as a fighter on the UFC’s (streaming service) I’m bringing new eyeballs to boxing and I’m throwing a spotlight on the boxing and MMA fighters who are on the event.
“I’m been a fan of the UFC for years. Me and (UFC President) Dana White have been friends for a long time, since before he even got started with the UFC. We’ve talked about Fight Pass showing a fight (of mine) and it has come about perfectly.”
Jones, 65-9 with 47 knockouts to his credit, will face Sigmon (30-11-1) over 10 rounds. Islands Fights will be the promoter for the five-fight card with TJ De Santis and Jeff Lacy doing commentary.
Jones carries a three-fight win streak into the bout. He’s secured victories over the likes of Felix Trindad, Antonio Tarver, John Ruiz and Vinny Pazienza during his career.
“It feels different. I’m emotional even thinking about how I’m going to feel on the day. I’m almost tearing up talking. I’m worried about how I am going to feel all day of the fight. I may be crying all day – but once I am in the ring I’ll have to put those tears away because there’s gonna be a guy in the other corner looking to beat me. Scott Sigmon won’t care about those tears. He cares about getting the win, that’s the reality.
“I turned professional in May 1989 in this same arena, but I’ve been doing this since 1979. In 39 years there’s not been a single day where I didn’t put on glove, skip, watch tape or spend time thinking about boxing.
“Boxing has been my life and it is my life. I’ve enjoyed every moment of it. So much of it is still fresh (in my mind), not one thing but so much jumps out when I look back, representing my country at the Olympics in 1988, becoming a world champion for the first time, becoming the No. 1 pound-for-pound vs James Toney, winning the world heavyweight title… like it was all yesterday.”