Friday, May 27, 2022

Israel Adesanya Laments Jon Jones’ Downfall: “What A Waste”

Once a fan of Jon Jones, turned long-time agitator, Israel Adesanya has revealed that he now feels sorry for the former UFC lightweight champion.

It’s no secret that the rivalry between Adesanya and Jones, which has played out exclusively over traditional and social media, is one of the most bitter in MMA. The duo have regularly hurled vile insults at each other, with Jones’ long list of legal indiscretions and personal struggles often providing irresistible fodder for Adesanya.

When Jones was arrested in October last year for allegedly assaulting his fiancée⁠—charges which were later dropped in a plea deal⁠—Adesanya had a field day, regularly taking to Twitter to rub salt into his wounds. And when footage of Jones’ arrest surfaced in February, showing the 34-year-old headbutting a police car, Adesanya didn’t hold back from throwing shade.

Jon Jones
Getty Images

Israel Adesanya Says He Now Pities Jon Jones

It wasn’t too long ago when it seemed like the Adesanya-Jones beef would one day be settled in the Octagon. But with Jones expected to make his heavyweight debut later this year, it’s likely the duo’s relationship will forever be confined to the Twittersphere. And also, podcast appearances.

Appearing on Hotboxin’ With Mike Tyson, Adesanya has yet again offered his opinion of Jones’ recent struggles, but this time, he’s taken a surprising empathetic turn. Speaking of Jones’ 2020 arrest, which was captured on police bodycam, “Stylebender” says that was the moment he started to feel sorry for the widely-regarded MMA GOAT.

“There was a clip like this of him getting arrested talking to the officer on a first-name basis,” said Adesanya. “And I remember just thinking—I was like, ‘Man, I felt sorry for him.'”

Israel Adesanya
(Andy Brownbill/Associated Press)

Israel also commented on Jones’ most recent arrest for allegedly assaulting his fiancée, reiterating his previously publicized thoughts that it wasn’t the first time Jon had done so.

“So this was the one that was recent after he got inducted into the Hall of Fame and then went back to his hotel room, apparently, and (hit) his fiancée,” said Adesanya. “And his daughter had to go downstairs with her mom and be like, ‘Call the cops.’ Imagine that. You know that’s not the first time that’s happened.”

Despite having regularly trolled Jones for the domestic assault incident, Adesanya said he loathes to speak about it because, at one time, he was in fact a Jon Jones fan. That fandom, he explains, has over the years morphed into rivalry, and now, simply pity for Jones and his unrealized potential.

“And [GROANS] it’s yuck, man,” continued Adesanya. “It’s yuck having to even speak on this because he’s a guy that when he first came up, I remember watching him at UFC 94 he fought Stephen Bonnar, and was the first time I saw him fight on a pay-per-view live. And I was like, ‘Yo, this guy’s special. And I was a fan of him, and he was a fan of me until he realized he wanted to fight me.

“And then, he became not a fan and we had this beef for a while and the fight never transpired—yet—but then, when I see shit like this—even this one, I’m empathetic. I’m a human being. I’m like, ‘Man, what a waste. What a waste of potential.’”

Are Israel Adesanya’s days of trolling Jon Jones behind him?

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