Jon Jones Explains Reasoning Behind Move To Heavyweight Ahead Of UFC 285: "I Wanted Greater Challenges"

Former UFC light heavyweight champion, Jon Jones, doesn't believe former interim heavyweight champ, Ciryl Gane, has faced anyone like him.

Jones spoke with reporters during Wednesday's media day for Saturday's UFC 285 event in Las Vegas, Nevada ahead of his heavyweight title clash with Gane, and believes none of the Frenchman's past opponents can prepare him for what the 35-year-old Rochester, New York native brings to the Octagon.

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"I could see him staying composed," Jones said. "He fought Tai Tuivasa in front of his home country. I'm sure that was a massive moment for him. But I'm not Tai Tuivasa. I look nothing like him, I don't perform like him. I'm not Derrick Lewis, I'm not Francis Ngannou. I'm a much, much different athlete. I'm by far the most versatile athlete he's ever faced. I'm the most experienced athlete he's ever faced. Whether he realizes it in the cage or walking to the cage, he will realize it by round two or round one. He'll realize it."

He also explained the motivations behind his decision to move up to heavyweight, citing the lack of buzz that there was for his UFC 247 title defense against, Dominck Reyes, back in February 2020, and having the desire for more financially lucrative matchups.

"I wanted more," Jones said. "I wanted greater challenges. These guys were relatively unknown, and I really wasn't happy with my pay either. That was a really big thing. I was at a place where I was just like, how can I spike the interest of the fans? No one knew Dominick Reyes for the most part. He was a killer, knocking out everyone, undefeated. No one respected him. I was just stuck in this place of how can I get to a certain level as an athlete. You see these guys like Deontay Wilder and all these athletes, who are not absolute legends, these guys were right around my level, been competing right around the same time. But these guys got these Ferrari's and private jets, and I'm just like, how can I get there? I just started to realized that I needed to bump up. That's what the fans wanted to see the whole time, and I just decided to make the leap."

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