This may shock you, but negotiations between Jon Jones and the UFC do not appear to be going well.
The former UFC light heavyweight champion took to Twitter on Friday to respond to UFC president Dana White's claim that he had demanded $30 million to fight heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou:
White threw out that claim during an appearance on "The Bill Simmons Podcast," saying that he is ready to give Derrick Lewis the next shot at the heavyweight crown:
From MMA Fighting:
“In his deal, he’s talking he wants $30 million guaranteed,” White said. “The way that this works is these guys all share in the pay-per-view, so you just said yourself you think that this is gonna be a big fight. I agree with you and think it’s gonna be a big fight, well he will share in the profits of the fight. That’s how it works. That’s how you run a business and you don’t go broke, that’s how that works.”
Speculation around a potential Jones-Ngannou bout has been circling since the moment Ngannou knocked out Stipe Miocic for the title last month. Immediately after the fight was called, Jones pointedly tweeted "Show me the money," and the fighter has been in talks with the promotion ever since.
In fact, the gamesmanship might have begun at White's news conference following Ngannou's win, as he said Jones should be scared enough of Ngannou to move back to light heavyweight. Meanwhile, Ngannou said he would welcome the challenge.
Negotiations have continued to play out in public, including when Jones tweeted that the UFC should just cut him. If this all sounds familiar, it's because around this point last year, Jon Jones was also publicly feuding with White and the UFC over a fight against Francis Ngannou.
Jones has not appeared in the Octagon since defeating Dominick Reyes in Feb. 2020.
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