The UFC found itself in an all too familiar situation with the announcement of a Jon Jones injury and a subsequent postponement of his fight with Daniel Cormier until January 3rd.
If Jones is injured then a postponement of the fight made sense, right? I would have thought so too until Gustafsson chimed in and said he would be ready for January. You see, Jones vs. Gustafsson was the original fight to make until the Swede suffered an injury and was ruled out of the fight. Luckily for the UFC they had an all-too-willing Daniel Cormier to step in. Now it seems that the UFC have overlooked big Gus when re-arranging the title fight.
Cormier so far in the light-heavyweight division has only fought twice, against (at the time) 4-0 Pat Cummins and 43-year-old Dan Henderson, not exactly number one contender credentials. I am not disputing the fact DC is a top fighter and no doubt he would give anyone in the UFC, at both heavy and light-heavyweight, a run for their money but he hasn’t quite earned his strips yet. He was in the right place at the right time when Gus got injured and I don’t blame the UFC for putting him in there.
Sense would put it that DC should have got a replacement for the UFC 178 card, this would have solidified the card as buyable and given Cormier more weight, should he have won, to his claim as number one contender to Jones’ title. Also we are forgetting that DC postponed surgery to fight Jones, now that the fight has been changed until January does this mean he won’t be getting surgery until after January? What if he wins? How long will the title be inactive for then?
Common sense would have been for DC to get surgery, Jones and Gustafsson fight in January and then the winner gets challenged by, the then recovered, Cormier.
But that is just sense (in my mind anyway) and, in the UFC, sense doesn’t make sense when hype is involved. You see the scuffle that Jones and DC got into during the media day meant one thing – MONEY. As much as the fight was anticipated before, that scuffle sent it up through the roof. Never before had we seen something like that. Sure we saw Ken Shamrock kick a chair or Sanchez nearly push Koscheck off a stage but never an all out brawl.
That incident meant that there was a chance the UFC could reach the PPV buyrate’s of the ‘Lesnar era’ and if there is a chance of that the UFC will not give up on it. So rather than do what makes sense they are going down the route of hype, which isn’t totally blameable either, it is a business after all and cash is king.