Friday, January 2, 2015

Jon Jones Vs. Daniel Cormier Is the Biggest Fight of the Year

2015 is starting off with a bang, as I don't think anything is going to touch this weekend for the greatness of sports content. With the New Year's holiday, the weekend started on Thursday, and you could make a pretty strong case that it started on Wednesday evening for New Year's Eve. The longer the weekend, the higher potential for greatness. Still, despite all of the bowl games, the NFL Playoffs, and Iowa wrestling twice this weekend, there is one event that stands above all others, and that is UFC 182 with the main event of Jon Jones defending his Light Heavyweight Championship against Daniel Cormier.

I have been looking forward to this fight since Cormier said he was going to drop down to 205. Cormier is basically Fedor Emelianenko if Fedor had a wrestling background instead of Sambo. He's so incredibly gifted at fighting that I needed no drama to get excited for a fight where he would challenge Jon Jones.

That being said, the drama and shit-talking from each side has been incredible. These guys don't like each other, and that is wonderful. It adds that extra element that gets me way too excited to watch grown men fight. And even with all of the personal dislike, there is still respect. Jon Jones hasn't voiced it as much, but Cormier openly states that Jones will be by far his toughest opponent. And he's right.

Also, you can think Jon Jones is a dick all you want (I basically agree), but there is no fighter that does a better job of being beautifully violent in his fights. He's the most exciting fighter since Pride-era Wanderlei Silva (I am horribly biased for Silva, so nobody will ever top him in my eyes), so every time he steps in the cage to fight, it is absolutely a must-watch event.

This comes down to a battle of good vs. evil. Daniel Cormier is an incredibly likable guy. He's honest, friendly, and most importantly, vulnerable. He will say Jon Jones is great. He will say that he's scared entering the cage. He will even say that the possibility of Jones beating him has crossed his mind. He's a person, and we can see his humanity; he's relatable. Jon Jones is none of those things. He lies, talks shit when the cameras are off (or at least when he thinks they're off), and never shows even a hint of vulnerability. Unless you are also a sociopath, there is no way to relate to him. It is good vs. evil. If Cormier wins on Saturday night, I will celebrate and be happy. If Jones wins, I will sulk and be totally bummed. These emotions from two people that I do not know are completely irrational, but that's what makes this so much fun.

Saying all that, you could take away that entire storyline, and it would still be the most exciting fight of the year.


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