The rematch between UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier and Interim Champion Jon Jones is the new headlining bout at UFC 200, following the protracted and public disagreement between the promotion and Conor McGregor that led the UFC to pull the bout between McGregor and Nate Diaz off the top spot.
News of the new main event was unveiled at this week’s UFC 200 press conference, at which Cormier and Jones – who so dislike each other that they once physically fought at a previous presser – wasted no time taking shots at each other from their respective sides of the aisle. Watch some of the video below, courtesy of Fox Sports:
Cormier and Jones were initially supposed to have their rematch at last week’s UFC 197, but Cormier was forced out of the fight due to injury and replaced with contender Ovince Saint Preux. UFC boss Dana White then declared that the match would be for an interim title belt, which Jones won.
Cormier and Jones will now look to see which of them is the real Light Heavyweight champ on July 9 – but as if it’s not obvious by now, there is zero love lost between these two fighters.
Of course, McGregor’s absence was a huge part of the press conference on Friday. He has been engaged in a long battle with the UFC, reportedly over his refusal to leave his training camp in Iceland to appear at press obligations such as this week’s conference. White once again stated the UFC’s position on the issue, and you can hear his latest comments below:
While the argument between the UFC and McGregor is likely to cloud UFC 200, having the Cormier and Jones rematch on the card is a huge headliner in its own right. One thing to watch for will be Jones having less than three months between his fight with Saint Preux and tackling Cormier – will that be a factor? How about Cormier coming off of injury?
What we do know given these fighters’ history and both of their big personalities is that the lead-up to this bout will absolutely be as entertaining as the fight itself, and the UFC now has a main event for its historic card that is as big as 200 deserves.
Aside from Cormier/Jones 2, UFC 200 is also set to feature Miesha Tate defending her newly earned Women’s Bantamweight Championship belt against Amanda Nunes, as well as a fight between contenders Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar for the interim Men’s Featherweight Championship title. The full fight card and tickets for the event are available at the UFC’s website.
UFC 200 takes place at the new T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on July 9. Are you excited to see Cormier and Jones as the new main event? Let us know in the comments.