It is always common to see a fighter rooting for his past opponents to win since it makes them look good. Since Jones has been inactive for quite a while, it is difficult to gauge where Jones is right now in terms of his prime years.
Obviously, Jones has yet to face a legitimate loss inside the Octagon, he has had a lot of controversial decisions in his past fights especially his last two fights. We take a look at his last wins after being suspended for his PED usage.
In his first comeback fight, he had a rematch against Alexander Gustafsson, the guy that gave Jones his most difficult fight. Although Jones was coming off a suspension, Gustafsson still had a bigger inactivity due to injuries. In the fight, it was close until Jones scored a takedown that Gustafsson had no answer, which then led to a finish.
Gustafsson then went on to lose against Anthony Smith and retired from the sport. A few months later he announced that he will be coming back once more but at heavyweight, he lost his heavyweight debut against former heavyweight champion, Fabricio Werdum.For Jones’s next fight, he took on Anthony Smith. Many considered Smith to be Jones’s easiest opponent on paper since Smith just had a double digit losses in his MMA pro career. Credit to Smith for getting a title shot, and well deserved. In the fight Jones dominated as expected but landed an illegal knee that would have cost him the fight.
Smith chose to continue which made Jones have deducted score for illegal strikes. Jones won the fight via unanimous decision. Anthony Smith then went on have wins and losses, still ranked but a bit far for a title shot.
Jones then went on to fight Muay Thai specialist, Thiago Santos. Unfortunately, Santos suffered an injury in the early parts of the fight that made him a bit hesitant in throwing explosive kicks. The fight ended in a split decision in favor of Jones.
Santos took a long layoff to recover from his injuries and went on to comeback but sadly lost his last two fights against Glover Teixeira and Alexander Rakic.
As for Jones’s last light-heavyweight fight, he fought then undefeated, Dominick Reyes where some thought Reyes won 3 rounds out of 5. It was a controversial decision. Jones then vacated the belt in pursuit to get the heavyweight strap. Reyes went on to lose against Jan Blachowicz for the vacant belt and then lost in a brutal fashion against Jiří Procházka.
Even though Jones past fights did not look like the best outcome, it was still a win at the end of the day. Although some fans are speculating that Jones is pricing himself out just to avoid fighting Ngannou, but Ngannou believes that Jones is willing to fight. The only thing that is stopping it is the UFC and Jones’s team.