The greatest fight in mixed martial arts history took place on August 28, 2005 at Pride FC – Final Conflict 2005 between Fedor Emelianenko and Mirko Filipovic. No matter what happens in mixed martial arts in the future, this fight will remain the standard for which all other super fights are judged. Over 14 years later and thousands of fights since, few, if any fights since have approached the significance of that fateful night at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan where Mirko “Cro Cop” lost to Fedor after three hard fought rounds by unanimous decision.
And while a superfight of truly epic proportions has failed to materialize in many years, there is chatter among the sports dedicated elite of a fight that could very well rival the Pride FC – Final Conflict 2005 showdown between Emelianenko and Filipovic as something to truly special to get excited about. The baddest man on the planet, UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic has been the subject of speculation in facing the UFC light heavyweight kingpin Jon Jones in a UFC superfight for all the marbles to settle the debate once and for all concerning who is the greatest fighter of all-time.
In comparing the size of these two athletes, according to a January 1, 2019 MMAFighting.com article titled, “UFC 232 fight night weights: Cris Cyborg only had 4.5-pound advantage on Amanda Nunes,” author Marc Raimondi noted that Jon Jones’s UFC 232 fight night weight check was 222.5 pounds in comparison to his opponent Alexander Gustafsson’s 219.5 pounds. In the past, Jones has been quoted as stating he walks around as much as 230-pounds according to a 2012 MMAMania.com report. At 6-foot-4 inches tall, Jon Jones is a legitimate heavyweight fighter when he isn’t cutting weight to make the 205-pound UFC light heavyweight championship limit.
And that 2012 mmamania.com report of a 230-pound Jon Jones was well before his latest performance enhancing drug suspension where Jones reportedly bulked up to as much as an estimated 235-240 pounds while strength training at Zia Strength Systems in Albuquerque, New Mexico according to the BleacherReport.com.
As for Stipe Miocic, coincidentally enough he is also 6-foot-4 and weighed in at 230.5 pounds for his most recent UFC 241 TKO victory over Daniel Cormier to reclaim the UFC heavyweight title. Though this data is not exactly apples for apples, the two athletes are not so dissimilar in size as to completely rule this potential superfight out as decidedly unfair for one party or the other. If the UFC wanted to make this fight happen, it very likely would be sanctioned by the state athletic commission and would absolutely be spoken of in the same breath as the legendary Fedor vs. Cro Cop showdown for long to come in mixed martial arts circles.
Just how great is Stipe Miocic? According to an August 18, 2019 BloodyElbow.com article titled, “Jon Jones declares Stipe Miocic ‘the greatest heavyweight of all time’ after UFC 241,” author Nick Baldwin writes, “Jones believes Miocic’s win over Cormier earned him status as undoubtedly the best heavyweight to ever walk the planet.” To ever walk the planet is about as high of praise as you’re going to get in the world of professional prize fighting that has had no shortage of incredible competitors in its long and storied history, and this is coming from Jon Jones nonetheless.
“It was a title bout of champions that ended in redemption for Stipe Miocic,” writes Alex Andrejev in his August 18, 2019 Denver Post article titled, “Stipe Miocic seals his legacy with UFC heavyweight championship title over Daniel Cormier.” According to Andrejev, “The five-time UFC heavyweight champion defeated the event’s reigning champion Daniel Cormier in Saturday’s UFC 241 headlining event in Anaheim, Ca. to reclaim the heavyweight title. Then, he danced a jig.”
In addition to being a five-time UFC heavyweight champion, Miocic defended the title a record a three consecutive times against some of the most dangerous men in the world before falling to Cormier at UFC 226 by KO in July of 2018. As far as UFC heavyweights go, Miocic is the most accomplished heavyweight fighter in the organizations history and is surely nobody to be taken lightly in the Octagon.
“Since earning the UFC heavyweight championship from Fabricio Werdum at UFC 198 in May 2016, Miocic has disposed of names such as Alistair Overeem, Junior dos Santos, and of course, Ngannou,” writes author Jack Crosby in his January 21, 2018 CBSSports.com article titled, “UFC 220: Stipe Miocic sets heavyweight title defense record with dominant win.”
According to Crosby, “Following Saturday night's victory, Miocic claimed himself to be the best heavyweight of all time on the microphone, and given the history he made at UFC 220, it may be hard for some to argue that.” The CBS Sports report would go on to point out, “More or less, the Cleveland native has cleaned out the heavyweight division, constantly moving everyone to wonder just who in the world he could face next.”
Speculation on who could possibly be next for Miocic is the other air apparent to the throne in the greatest of all-time debate, perennial UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones. Among the sports most controversial stars, the team Jackson-Wink MMA representative has appeared both beatable and final-boss level, super human throughout his career depending on which Jon Jones decides to show up that particular night.
“I believe that I’m already the greatest fighter of all time,” Jones said. “My record speaks for itself. I’ve beaten six Hall of Famers already and my resume is (incomparable) to anybody in our sport,” writes author Mike Dyce in his 2017 FanSided.com article titled, “Jon Jones: ‘I’m already the greatest fighter of all time’.”
And Jones is in some pretty good company when it comes to echoing similar sentiments about his overall resume in the Octagon. In a June 14, 2018 BleacherReport.com article titled, “Dana White: Jon Jones Greatest Ever; 'Imagine If He Tried Even a Little Bit',” author Adam Wells writes,” UFC president Dana White believes Jon Jones is the greatest mixed martial artist of all time. He also acknowledged the former light-heavyweight champion's problems that knocked him off course.”
Those problems include habitually flagging for banned performance enhancing drug use as well as his well-publicized plights with the criminal justice system, all of which have significantly cut into the light heavyweight king’s career. When Dana White says imagine if Jones even tried a little bit, I believe what he really means is Jon Jones only scratched the surface of how truly great he could have been due to his numerous poor decisions outside the Octagon in the arena of life. And that is saying a lot for someone who is still the current UFC light heavyweight champion of the world, having virtually cleared out the division and being a reigning champion who enjoys status as the undisputable greatest fighter in the history of mixed martial arts competition. Simply put, Jon Jones is a phenom, mixed martial arts equivalent to Lance Armstrong or Barry Bonds.
The title of heavyweight champion of the world is on the hearts and minds of fans across the globe when they think about the term greatest of all-time and it’s the proverbial worm on the hook dangling just out of reach from Jones in securing to his own legacy in a superfight bout with UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic for all the marbles in a matchup that has potential to be one of, if not the greatest fights in mixed martial arts history, rivaling even the storied Fedor Emelianenko vs. Mirko Filipovic showdown at Pride FC – Final Conflict 2005 as the definitive fight in the short but magnificent history in mixed martial arts cage fighting.