Before the scorecards were read at UFC 165 on Saturday night in Toronto, those who witnessed the brutal five-round bout between the UFC’s reigning light heavyweight champion and his Swedish challenger began yammering for a rematch.
It really didn’t matter who won – although Jones did by unanimous decision – an overwhelming majority wants to see that fight again.
Even UFC president Dana White said at the post-fight press conference that he would like to see the rematch, although he was non-committal about when, having already promised Teixeira the next shot.
Teixeira will be the next challenger for the belt, but it all came down to the champion’s wishes. Jones asked for and was granted the Brazilian as his next challenger.
Immediately after the fight, Jones was leaning towards granting Gustafsson a rematch. He told UFC Tonight, however, that after watching replays of the fight about ten times, Jones believes he decisively won the second, fourth, and fifth rounds, so he wants to move on and fight Teixeira next.
White on Wednesday night confirmed to ESPN that Jones made the request and that fight is what the UFC intends for him.
“That’s what the champ wants,” White said. “We’ll probably have that fight on the Super Bowl card in New Jersey.”
The UFC has traditionally done its Super Bowl weekend events in Las Vegas, but Fox has the rights to the Super Bowl this season, which takes place Feb. 2, 2014, at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Fox is looking to take over the sports world that week, doubling down with the Super Bowl and what is typically one of the UFC’s biggest shows of the year.
Gustafsson is not completely out of the picture though. White told ESPN that the Swede would likely fight on his home turf around the same time, insinuating that he could be back in the Octagon against the Jones/Gustafsson victor.
“Around the same time of the Jones-Teixeira fight, Gustafsson will fight in Sweden,” White said. “I don’t have an official date for that yet.”
The UFC has operated shows in Stockholm the past two years, each time in April.
Jones, in a statement from the UFC, also confirmed his intent to rematch Gustafsson after fighting Teixeira despite believing he won decisively in Toronto.
“I said before the (Gustafsson) fight my sights were set on breaking the record,” Jones said in the statement. “I want to crush the record. I want to beat the record so bad it can never be broken.
“I’m going to fight Glover and I will answer all the critics about the Gustafsson fight. I will fight Gustafsson after I fight Glover. I won the fight, but I look at it as a blemish on my record because some people think I didn’t. I promise you, he will be next.”