Passing the Torch from Silva to Jones?

December 14, 2011
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There’s no denying the meteoric rise of Jon “Bones” Jones to the top of the UFC’s light heavyweight division, and into discussions for the best pound-for-pound fighter on the planet.

Even Jones admits, however, that long reigning UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva still sits atop that list as the best fighter in the sport.

But at 37 years of age and having openly talked about retirement, Silva’s time in the sport is closer to the end than the beginning now.

UFC president Dana White knows just how talented Jones is and how dangerous he can be in the Octagon. It’s hard to not look at Jones’ dominance and not think about the same kind of things that Silva’s been able to do over the last few years.

“If this guy can keep his personal life together, continue to grow as a fighter, who beats this guy?” White pondered.

One of Jones’ greatest criticisms of late has been his apparent change in attitude. Despite his coaches’ continued praise of his humble attitude in and out of the gym, people keep pointing fingers and saying that as his fame grows, so does his cocky attitude.

White believes that Jones has every right to be cocky, if that’s even what he’s doing right now.

“Let me tell you what, if I was kicking people’s asses the way he is, I’d be cocky too,” said White.

Of course when talking about pound-for-pound the best fighters in MMA, you can’t forget people like Georges St-Pierre, Frankie Edgar, Jose Aldo, or Dominick Cruz. Still with Jones’ ability to finish fighters like he’s been doing, literally rolling over the top fighters in his division, he might just be the closest thing to Anderson Silva this sport has ever seen.

When Silva finally does walk away, will Jon Jones carry the torch forward for the UFC?

“Could be,” answered White.

Check out what White had to say about both Jon Jones and Anderson Silva in this exclusive video:

  • simonsays

    Torch has been passed. Silva is done, injury-prone, very selective of who he fights due to his age. Face it, MMA is not an old-man sport. 37 is OLD for the body.

    While Jones annoys me with his phony attitude, he will be harder to beat than Silva. Yes I know no one has convincingly beaten Silva (to the end), I don’t see anyone doing anything like that to Jones.

    • mmafan7

      You sir, are an idiot. SIlva is the top fighter, and hasn’t lost since 06, hasn’t lost a title challenge… Maybe Sonnen rocked him, but Sonnen got f*cked when he got submitted, Silva keeps his cool… and Jones isn’t yet on Silva’s level.
      Jones get nervous too when pushed, he basically ran away from Machida for most of Round 1. He’s a great fighter, but not there yet.

    • kylesmith

      As soon as Jones defends his belt 9 times in a row you can start with that talk. I’m not saying it won’t happen but until it does, come ON man…

    • onebad

      interesting name? do you work for fox or ufc? trying to promote jones? silva has won four times the amount jones has and fought for an era. jones has only one way to catch up to silva and that is to fight him. which, I imagine you already knew. 150 is a number dana is trying to sell. since they can’t risk gsp against anyone because he would lose to either diaz or condit.

  • collideoverme

    Not everyone can be a Randy Couture who was just a physical phenom. I was against Jones when he fought Rampage and again when he was against Machida. Dude is for real. Jones is definitely no joke.

  • Matt Magick

    He’s no jokes and I’ll give him the #2 P4P slot, but I feel if Silva fought him at 205 he’d win, Bones is still tenative and doesnt have the skill set of Silva. GIve it a couple years and we’ll talk

  • voltaire64

    He’s number 2 but to say he’s surpassed Silva is absurd. Lets wait until he actually gets to age 37, moves up to HW and cleans out that division.

  • voltaire64

    As for Silva picking and choosing opponents, I just don’t see it. What is the incentive of fighting somebody like Sonnen or Hendo when not only have you beat them but finished them. Can’t believe the number of people who Sonnen manages to troll in.

    • TKD

      You said it right!

  • Tone

    Jones isn’t even #2 current P4P. To say that at this point is absurd and just letting oneself get caught up in the moment. He’s very good, no doubt and he “may” be the best out there but he shouldn’t be ranked even in the top 5 P4P right now.

    First of all, how many top 10 oppopents has he beaten? 3. How many has Silva, GSP, Fedor, Cruz, Aldo, BJ, Edgar, Fitch, Melendez, and Hendo beaten? You could make the argument that since they’ve lost but Jones hasn’t yet that should factor in and I agree, but not enough to make up for the 5-7 more top 10 wins that Anderson and GSP have. Hell, when Fedor was undefeated some people still put Anderson and GSP above him even though he had about as many top 10 wins and no losses.

    Second, at 6’4″ and a 225 lb cage weight, Jones is a huge LHW, possibly the largest LHW in the UFC and could easily fight at HW. None of the other guys up for consideration is so large for their divison. Anderson and GSP are above average, but not huge for their divisions compared to their competition. If we’re talking P4P the size of the fighter relative to his opposition must be considered to a lesser degree as well.

    Putting Jones above Anderson or GSP on the current P4P list doesn’t make sense.

  • kylesmith

    I think it’s fair to rank him #2 P4P because he actually knows how to finish fights. GSP should be knocked down to like #5 by now.

    • Cptmats

      Stupidest comment ever !

  • hawgwild

    P4P as been passed for some time. Silva has a lot of wins. Whoopee, have you looked at the list of people he has fought? Some has-beens, some way past their prime, and some way over rated. Middle-weight is by far the weakest weightclass in the UFC. For gods sake Nathan Marquardt is ranked 4th and Bisbing is 5th! I cant stand Sonnen but if he doesnt get caught in the last round, we would all be talkin about Silvas retirement right now.

    • TKD

      That is what true champions are made of. To say that Sonnen “got caught” in the 5th round is a joke. The fight was scheduled for 5-5 minute rounds, not just until someone started winning the fight, or won enough rounds to stop it. A champion finds ways to win, regardless of what time of the fight they pull it off. Sonnen is never going to be a champion. Get over this nonsense that Sonnen was winning so he should be champion. It is such a 3rd grade argument!

      • hawgwild

        When did I say Sonnen won? Maybe its your 3rd grade reading ability. And are you saying Sonnen didnt get “caught”? lol

        • TKD

          I am saying that Sonnen is a lot like you…a loser. You and all of the Sonnen fools out there love whine and use the “But Sonnen was winning for almost the entire fight” argument. It is as ridiculous as thinking you have a brain. He cheated and still lost. Did anyone read that to you? Were you made aware that he cheated, or do the illustrated books you read not show enough pictures for you to comprehend that information? I will assume that you are such a Chael nut-sucker that you won’t admit that he cheated, right?

          • hawgwild

            Holy crap you didnt even make it to 3rd grade did you. Read my original statement dumbass. It says “I cant stand Sonnen…”. WTF is wrong with you. A little insecure about Silva arent you? lol

  • shereko

    New stupidest statement ever

  • RubeKegal

    Like Chael Sonnen said in his Youtube video titled -Backstage with Chael Sonnen-, “There’s no pound for pound tournament. There’s no championship called Pound 4 pound. They got a guy named Jose Aldo who, for some odd reason got the whole world calling him JOE-SAY Aldo ranked #3 pound for pound. They annointed him UFC Champion. He never fought in the UFC and he was the UFC champion. The only thing more absurd than that is the night they woke Matt Hughes up and informed him he was the world champion. It is ridiculous. The people that sit around and attempt to create a pound for pound list are 1 step away from the same people that sit around and discuss the different possible integers as to why Batman can beat Superman. It’s impossible to know…it’s a ridiculous topic. How long were we told that Mike Tyson was the baddest guy in the world…all along Evander Holyfield was there wasn’t he? and he wouldn’t fight him, when he finally did he got destroyed. So Evander is the best ever right? Wrong cuz Lennox Lewis was there the whole time and Evander wouldn’t fight him.” <— All from Chael.

    • shereko

      Good points RubeKegal, and I know you were quoting, so to reply to that… Chael is NOT the Evander to Tyson, or the Lennox to Evander. With Chael’s and others logic, anyone who comes back in a fight to win, actually didn’t win. So recently, Mir broke Nogeira’s arm but really lost because he was staggered first. LOL That just sounds dumb. To say that he should be punished for cleaning out a “weaker” division, that also sounds naive, first he’s been in the division for 6 years undefeated. He destroyed then number 1 and 22-1 at the time Rich Franklin 2x, and also at least moved up to 205 and destroyed a recent 205 champ in Forrest, yes diminished talent since, but how can you pick when someone is on the decline prior to them declining? Couture is known for a light-heavyweight and heavyweight champ, but really how tough was Tim Sylvia as a champ, compared to now. What I’m saying is, there are peaks and valleys in divisions, and Anderson has dominated since. Including beating Dan Henderson who is now in style of saying is so dominating. Plus destroying a tough Vitor Belfort. What you’re not including are the guys thats moved up or down to avoid fighting Anderson. He’s also never been knocked out, as of age 37. Caught in a triangle once, and I have to bring up a ridiculously, phenomenal, flying scissor heel hook by Ryo Chonan… am I saying Jones won’t pass him? No. Maybe he will, maybe he’ll move up, maybe this or that. Thing is, too soon to tell. But, give Anderson the credit he’s earned. As of now, the greatest fighter in the sport we obviously are fans of or we wouldn’t be here. Ohhh…. and Superman was created too strong, theres no contest Superman wills 100/100 over Batman

      • shereko

        Also you can rip that Franklin wasn’t dominating but, even though on the downside of his career, he beat Wandy and Chuck. Anderson beat him in his prime.

  • trevor

    Anderson Silva- a good fighter in a very weak division.
    Jon Jones-a good fighter with not nearly enough fights or years on earth to have a legacy.

    George St. Pierre- a good fighter in a very competitive division.

    P4p- who cares.

    Chael Sonnen- he was winning in dominating fashion and yes he lost, but if anyone deserves a rematch it is him.
    The end.

    • shereko

      Tell me how Middleweight is that ridiculously weak? Ok, compare it to me to say… heavyweight or Feather, or Bantam? Yes… Welter and Light Heavyweight are probably the most stacked. But, Middleweight is in the middle, not the worst depth.

      How many times does Dominick have to fight Uriah, or Bowles or Benevidez? Who is pushing Aldo? Nunes or Mendes maybe… and in Middleweight, there are guys that look really good against others until they fight Anderson. Thats what you forget, you see how he destroys them and the end result, and since they got whooped, then its bad and a weak division. Wandy, Vitor, Leben, Maia, Bisping, Sonnen, Munoz, Cung Le, Stann, Okami… its not that bad.

      IF you hate Silva, just say it. Its your opinion. No big deal, I hate Jones’s cockiness, and fake persona… but, doesn’t mean he hasn’t dominated. Maybe these guys he’s beaten are past their primes? He’s beaten a sub-par Machida, Rua? lol doubtful. But, I still don’t like him. You can’t control who is at your weight class, or if someone moves up or down to avoid him.

  • longtime fan

    wow most of you only know what you hear. In one year, jon jones has beat tougher opponents than anderson silva has his whole career and hes doing it in convincing fashion everytime. end of discussion. i dont care who is doing the p4p rankings. put them up against eachother now or in both of their primes and jones takes it handily.

  • shereko

    Forrest beat Rampage, and Rua… Anderson beat Forrest. Henderson beat Rua. Rua and Rampage beat Machida… You can’t compare p4p. Styles make fights.

    I like how you just group everything just to make yourself feel better “Most of you only know what you hear” … and you only know the past year. You flip on a pay per view at your buddys house over a beer and you know what you’re talking about?

    • longtime fan

      yeah and rua whooped forest too. so whats your point. ive been in the mma business im sure longer than you. are we gonna start talkin about who beat anderson silva and who those ppl have lost to and won to. no… how did i group everything together??? oh it makes me feel so much better too. your obviously a lil ignorant. anderson silva has beat dan and belfort…. those are his best wins. jon jones will prove to be the p4p best soon enough. but im just saying anderson silva really has never been the best p4p, you can argue it all day, but when its all said and done, you wont be able to argue jon jones

      • shereko

        Obviously you didn’t read what you or what I wrote… that’s fine, you proved you’re the ignorant one. You’re exact quote “wow most of you only know what you hear”… ok the MAJORITY then… is that better? Also, you weren’t bright enough to see my point, I was pointing out who beat who, and how that doesn’t matter because it is p4p, it doesn’t prove anything its subjective. If you’ve been around so long, then you would show your expertise by knowing that 2 defenses don’t equal a career or legacy. But, since you’re lips are firmly implanted on Bones’s cheeks, its tough for you to be subjective. Jones hasn’t even had as many defenses as Frank Shamrock,Chuck or Tito did, yet you’ve anointed him greatest ever. I also stated that Jones has dominated so far. I’m glad you have a crystal ball but, the article stated now. You may want to work on reading comprehension it may help you out as a more well rounded person. Might get you out of that MMA circle you state you’ve been around so for so long.

  • juniorbra

    Jesus !!!! you guys are so stupids, leave the f***ing guy alone….All of you guys and Chael the Cheater (this guy should be in jail now) are F*****ing jealous because Anderson has been the best fighter in the last 6 to 7 years, and Chael wish he was Silva, that’s why he’s going after silva like a bitch… Jones is a great fighter, he’s time will come but i don’t believe is now he still have a lot to fight in the UFC…

    • opposition13

      Oh go build Anderson a house and rub his sack, I say lets put them against each other and see who dances the best…I can care less for Sh!t who has won most or who they have fought, they are both good fighters so Dana lets make it happen!!!!!!!!!1