Looks like I can't call the light heavyweight champ "Chicken Bones" Jones anymore! I just read an article on MMAFighting.com which says that he and Chael Sonnen will be opposing coaches on the next season of "The Ultimate Fighter." At the end, they will fight for the title. I want to say that I am freaking stoked for this! At the same time, there are some drawbacks:
1) Sonnen has not done enough to earn this opportunity, so it cheapens the light heavyweight title. The UFC 151 situation was different. Sonnen deserved a shot because he was the only one willing to take it. Everyone else got their turn in line, so to speak, and wimped out at the prospect of fighting the No. 2 pound-for-pound fighter in the world. He became the man for the job because he was the only man willing to do it. However, at this point, to shove him to the front of the line before the winners of Henderson vs. Machida and Shogun vs. Gustafsson doesn't make much sense, other than as a "thank you" for being a company man.
2) Sonnen is going to be rusty as heck coming in to this fight, since he is not going to have his December match against Forrest Griffin. The match would have not only kept him sharp, but would also be a confidence booster if he managed to avenge his previous loss to the former light heavyweight champ. Ring rust is not something that you want against a man of Jon Jones' caliber.
On the one hand, there are some major pros to this decision:
1) Jon Jones gets to redeem himself in the eyes of the fans. This is good because, once Anderson Silva retires, he's the one who's going to be carrying the torch.
2) The UFC will make a ton of money because this match has a built-in, WWE-esque storyline. The fallen hero, Jon Jones, who had his name dragged through the mud because of the UFC 151 cancellation, gets to regain his honor by fighting the biggest MMA villain of all time. Also, Sonnen, the man who almost beat Anderson Silva, gets one final chance to prove that he can earn UFC gold before he succumbs to every fighter's nemesis: age.
3) People will actually start watching "The Ultimate Fighter" again. Nelson and Carwin simply don't have the same kind of star appeal that Jones and Sonnen have.
In other words, this is a high-risk move by Dana White that can either blow up in his face, or take the UFC to new heights. Either way, I can't wait to see what happens!
You can read more about this turn of events at the link below: