Jon Jones, the heavyweight champion, has expressed regret to Stipe Miocic for pulling out of their scheduled bout at UFC 295. This change comes as Jones prepares to undergo surgery.
The former two-time light-heavyweight champion, Jones, had set his sights on defending his heavyweight title against the renowned Miocic on 11 November. However, an unfortunate injury in training has hindered these plans.
UFC’s president, Dana White, detailed the injury saying, “Jones experienced a tear in the tendon linking the pectoral muscle to the bone during a wrestling session.” He added that the 36-year-old fighter would need approximately eight months of recovery. In light of this development, Tom Aspinall and Sergei Pavlovich have been chosen to contend for the interim heavyweight title at UFC 295.
Addressing the situation in an Instagram video released on Thursday (26 October), Jones conveyed, “I appreciate everyone who’s reached out to me during this time. It’s undoubtedly a challenging period, but as an athlete, injuries are part and parcel of our journey.”
He continued, “A heartfelt thanks to the UFC for connecting me with Dr. Neal ElAttrache, one of the country’s top medical professionals. My gratitude also extends to Stipe Miocic for his dedication and preparation. Apologies to him and his team. This is the unpredictable nature of our sport.”
Jones expressed gratitude towards his coaches, teammates, and supporters. “The current plan is to have the surgery tomorrow and jump back into training as soon as feasible. It looks like Miocic and I will be facing off later on.”
Detailing his upcoming plans, he shared, “I’ll be engrossed in surgery and rehabilitation for the coming months. Despite the setbacks, I remain undeterred and optimistic. Thanks for the prayers and support. I genuinely regret any inconvenience caused to the fans, especially those who made plans to attend the match at Madison Square Garden [the venue for UFC 295 in New York City]. I hope Aspinall and Sergei deliver an incredible performance. I might even attend the event. Thanks for the love, and rest assured, I’ll bounce back.”
According to a report by the Daily Mail, Many speculated that Jones might consider retirement after his bout with the 41-year-old Miocic. Jones’s victory against Ciryl Gane in March, where he won in the first round, was his inaugural match in the heavyweight category after a three-year hiatus. On the other hand, Miocic hasn’t stepped into the ring since his loss to Francis Ngannou in March 2020.
The previously slated co-main event for UFC 295 has now been promoted to the primary event. This will feature ex-middleweight champion Alex Pereira taking on former light-heavyweight champion Jiri Prochazka for the vacant 205lbs title.