One issue Jones, and a lot of professional MMA fighters have, is accidental eye pokes during bouts and Reyes wants to make sure the official is aware of Jones’ issue with them.
“It’s something where it is what it is. Not much I can do about it except give the referee an advanced “hey man, please look out for this, he’s notorious for this,” Reyes said to MMA Fighting. “It’s going to be hard for me to get in. I’m not going to run my face directly into fingers. It is what it is. It’s just another challenge that he presents. I think more than just the fingers being outstretched is that he stays busy with that lead hand. I think that’s what keeps guys at bay, he paws with it and he paws exactly at his range. That’s been a gigantic weapon of his. It sets up the rest of his arsenal. It helps him find his range.”
Reyes says it will ultimately be up to him in the end to make sure that the referee is aware of Jones’ eye poking ways.
“It’s a blatant rule break. You can’t do it. It’s in the rules,” Reyes said. “It’s been talked about many times. Either you’re going to do it or you’re not going to do it. It’s up to me on fight night to talk to the ref and make him aware.”
UFC 247 takes place on Saturday, February 8 from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas with Jon Jones and Dominick Reyes headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.