Jon Jones took issue with several media members before and after UFC 232. One of them was former opponent Chael Sonnen, who Jones shut down live on-air.
Jones bullied a reporter at the UFC 232 pre-fighter press conference inciting the crowd to join in, walked out on interviews ahead of UFC 232, evaded questions from Michael Bisping and then tried to avoid a post-fight interview with him, and told Ariel Helwani during he and Sonnen’s post-fight edition of “Ariel and the Bad Guy” that he only wanted to field questions from Helwani.
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Sonnen acquiesced, leaving Helwani to conduct the UFC 232 post-fight interview solo, Sonnen quietly seated across the desk from him on-air.
Sonnen let Jones have his moment in the spotlight, but later responded to the situation, simply stating that he felt Jones had been rude in appearing on the show, but requesting that one of the show’s hosts not ask him any questions.
“What Jon is used to is getting into a battle of wits with me, and then I make him look like a horse’s ass,” Sonnen said via his YouTube channel. “So I could see where he would not want to do that, plus he was getting asked very tough questions and I understood the language. The media that were asking the questions didn’t even know what a picogram was, they didn’t know what Turinabol was, they didn’t understand half-life, they didn’t understand the testing process — so I think he might have had a fear that I was going to do that to him.
“Now he would have been wrong. I would not have done that to him. Not in that role. I am there for ESPN, I am on the clock, if you will, and this is his moment. But he doesn’t know that. I couldn’t fault him for that, and I don’t. I don’t hold a grudge that he did it. I thought it was very rude. I thought it was rude to come onto a show and then not take questions from the host of the show.”
Despite the idea that he though Jones rude, Sonnen went on to explain how Jones actually had somewhat of an ally in him pertaining to the controversy surrounding Jones’s doping history and the move of UFC 232 from Las Vegas to Los Angeles.
(Courtesy of Chael Sonnen)