UFC Star Jon Jones Just Another Issue on Top of Depleted UFC Main Event Roster
The UFC announcement of the suspension of Jon Jones is the correct move, but it now has the UFC reaching and hoping for new stars to breakout.
Jones has turned himself into authorities after being investigated for a felony hit-and-run a few days ago. Witnesses of the crash say he hit an SUV with a pregnant woman, breaking her arm causing the felony charge, fled the scene and returned to grab some cash before running again.
President of the UFC Dana White made the decision to strip Jones of his UFC light heavyweight championship and pulled him from the main event of UFC 187 at the end of May. With all the charges surrounding Jones, this is the only move for White to make. Jones has previously found himself in legal trouble and White excused it all before. With a felony charge, White couldn't cover this time around for one of his biggest stars.
In the last few years of the UFC, White has found his biggest stars falling right through his hands. Georges St Pierre, former UFC welterweight champion, retired at the end of 2013 and vacated the title. On top of retiring, St Pierre threw the UFC under the bus by calling its drug-testing a policy a joke. UFC immediately responded with a new drug-testing policy.
Anderson Silva, former UFC middleweight champion, suffered a brutal leg fracture in December 2013. He battled back and made his return at UFC 183 last January, defeating Nick Diaz in the main event. Following the fight, it was announced that Silva failed a pre-fight drug test for steroids. Diaz also failed a drug test. Silva's next fight has not been announced.
Now with the Jones issues added on top, White is having to find some more fighters to jump up and take the top spots. Just a few nights ago at UFC 186, Demetrious Johnson headlined the show by successfully defending his UFC flyweight championship against Kyoji Horiguchi. The issue with the fight? Fans left during the main event. In response to fans leaving early, the never shy UFC President responded with "I don't give a s*** what people are doing."
The remaining star on the UFC roster is Ronda Rousey, who has dominated the UFC women's bantamweight division. In her previous UFC fights, Rousey has beat her last three challengers in a combined 1:36. Her longest fight in the UFC was a three round submission victory over Miesha Tate at UFC 168. While it's easy to market Rousey, the UFC might find itself struggling to sell her headlined pay-per-views if she continues to have no threats.
It's time for the UFC to dig deep and find it's next breakout star. They have a great opportunity with a lot of young talent on their roster. Without Jones, UFC 187 will be headlined by two of the rising stars in Anthony Johnson and Daniel Cormier. Just a couple months later, Connor McGregor will challenge Jose Aldo in a highly anticipated fight for the UFC featherweight championship.
The next few events for the UFC could the spark that pushes the company back to having sold out shows, top pay-per-view buys, and stars that excite people. A few years ago they went through the transition from Couture/Liddell to the likes of Silva/St Pierre. Now they can transition to the likes of the next group. The question will just be who?