A look back at how Jon Jones won the UFC light heavyweight title and successfully defended it a division record eight times in a row before being stripped of the title for disciplinary reasons.
UFC 128 VS. MAURICIO "SHOGUN" RUA
March 19, 2011, in Newark, N.J.
Several hours after thwarting a purse snatcher in nearby Paterson, N.J., Jon Jones hit Rua seemingly at will with knees, punches, elbows and leg kicks until Rua finally fell to the canvas in the third round. Jones became the new champion.
UFC 135 VS. QUINTON "RAMPAGE" JACKSON
Sept. 24, 2011, in Denver
In his first title defense, Jon Jones submitted Rampage with a rear naked choke in the fourth round. It was his third submission as a UFC fighter, the first by rear naked choke.
UFC 140 VS. LYOTO MACHIDA
Dec. 10, 2011, in Toronto
Machida was the first fighter to really connect with a strike that wobbled Jon Jones, but the champion regained his composure quickly and submitted Machida with a standing guillotine in the second round.
UFC 145 VS. RASHAD EVANS
April 21, 2012, in Atlanta, Ga.
The narrative for this fight centered on Jon Jones and Evans being former teammates and close friends. Jones had no problem in defeating his former mentor, winning by unanimous decision.
UFC 152 VS. VITOR BELFORT
Sept. 22, 2012, in Toronto
Jon Jones’ public image took a hit when UFC 151 was canceled after he declined to accept a fight against Chael Sonnen on 10 days’ notice after Dan Henderson pulled out with a knee injury. Jones was seconds away from being submitted by a Belfort arm bar in the first round, but he fought it off and won by submission (Americana) in the fourth round.
UFC 159 VS. CHAEL SONNEN
April 27, 2013, in Newark, N.J.
Jon Jones tied Tito Ortiz’s UFC record with a fifth straight title defense when he beat Chael Sonnen by TKO in the first round. Jones was 27 seconds away from losing the bout by injury. He dislocated his toe earlier in the round but didn’t notice until it was pointed out during his post-fight interview.
UFC 165 VS. ALEXANDER GUSTAFSSON
Sept. 21, 2013, in Toronto
Jon Jones' 10th straight and new UFC division record sixth straight title defense was his toughest, closest, most controversial and considered among the best fights in MMA history. Judges unanimously gave Jones the win, scoring it 48-47, 48-47, 49-46.
UFC 172 VS. GLOVER TEIXEIRA
April 26, 2014, in Baltimore
Jones put on another classic performance and pitched a shutout against Teixeira for his seventh consecutive title defense. Jones fought most of the fight with his left hand and most of the fight in close range, negating his own nine-inch reach and beating Teixeira where he's strongest.
UFC 182 VS. DANIEL CORMIER
Jan. 3, 2015, in Las Vegas Jon Jones made his eighth consecutive title defense by out-grinding Daniel Cormier for the unanimous decision. Jones was able to take down Cormier, a two-time former U.S. Olympic wrestler, multiple times. In the fourth and fifth rounds, Jones asserted his dominance and controlled Cormier to the point where he could barely mount any offense.
Jon Jones stripped of title
JON JONES STRIPPED OF TITLE
April 28, 2015
Jones was arrested on April 27 in connection with a hit-and-run crash in Albuquerque, New Mexico, a day earlier morning and faces a felony charge of leaving the scene of an accident involving death or personal injuries. The next day, the UFC suspended Jones indefinitely and stripped him of his title.
JON JONES VS. OVINCE SAINT PREUX
April 23, 2016
In his first fight back from suspension, Jones won a unanimous decision over Saint Preux to become the interim light heavyweight champion. Jones originally was scheduled to fight Daniel Cormier, but he pulled out of the fight with an injury a few weeks earlier.
UFC 214: JONES VS. CORMIER 2
July 29, 2017, in Anaheim, Calif.
Jon Jones knocked out Daniel Cormier in the third round to reclaim his light heavyweight title at UFC 214. Jones landed a vicious head kick and followed up with ground and pound to finish Cormier. A few weeks later, Jones was flagged for a potential anti-doping policy violation by USADA for a sample collected right after the weigh-ins. Jones was suspended then reinstated a little more than a year later. It was the third time Jones had been stripped of a UFC title.