FOX Sports Exclusive
Jones-Teixeira likely for March
Super Bowl weekend seemed like the perfect landing spot for Jon Jones’ next title defense. The brother of two NFL stars, fighting in the same town where the NFL’s marquee game, just one state over from his hometown. Despite an early, official UFC announcement that the reigning light-heavyweight champion would fight Glover Teixeira during that stretch, company president Dana White on Monday reversed course, saying the match would instead likely take place in March.
White made the announcement during a conference call with reporters on Monday. He did not mention a specific date or location, but said the news about a Super Bowl weekend card was prematurely released.
“It wasn’t true. It wasn’t a done deal,” he said. “We didn’t have that fight done and that’s not when it’s happening. It’s not happening on Super Bowl. There’s no injuries. There’s no anything.”
When pressed by FOX Sports for a more specific explanation, White said from the UFC’s perspective, the timing of it “didn’t work out.”
Though no March 2014 dates are official, the UFC has pledged to run an annual event in Montreal during the month, but no indication was given that the Jones-Teixeira fight would be placed there.
After defeating Alexander Gustafsson in a close September matchup, Jones has won all six of his defenses, setting a divisional record.
White said Jones preferred a matchup with a fresh opponent rather than going to an immediate rematch with Gustafsson. However, White said that Gustafsson would fight around the same time as Jones, and that if both of them won their respective bouts, there would “100 percent” be a rematch of one of 2013’s best fights.
White recalled his conversation with Jones on the situation.
“He was like, ‘I want Glover Teixeira, the guy’s on a 20-fight win streak, I want to fight him next. I want to beat him. I’m not beating the same guys I already beat. Then when I get into guys I already beat, Gustafsson is that guy that I want.’ And that was from him. And when you really listen to what he said, how the f--- can I ever argue with that? It makes sense to me.”