Although the latest season of “The Ultimate Fighter” has not premiered, UFC Light Heavyweight champion Jon Jones said he has embraced his role as a coach.
In an interview with MMAJunkie.com, Jones said that his time at his gym helped prepare him.
“I definitely have become a leader in my own team at Jackson’s MMA. It’s something that has been slowly coming upon me, and I feel it.
Although he may have become a leader at Jackson’s MMA, coaching a group of fighters is a different beast in itself. Unless he has brought some of his teammates along with him, it will not be the same environment he is used to.
Being a leader at Jackson’s MMA may have also prepared him on training with fighters he is used to seeing in the gym on a daily basis, but it may not be the same as taking a group of fighters he has never met, and molding them into perfectly tuned fighting machines.
In the interview Jones also said that he hopes to show that “age is just a number” and that “wisdom outweighs age any day.”
While I agree with Jones that wisdom does not necessarily come with age, some fighters – ones who are older than the light heavyweight champion – may not take kindly to someone younger than them trying to coach them. They also may have the mindset that the Greg Jackson style of coaching is “boring.”
Then again, the more mature fighters may think,” Well he is a UFC champion, he must know what he is doing.”
Jones has a skill set that any fighter can benefit from learning, if they are willing to swallow their pride or push aside any misconceptions they have of Jones and pay attention.
How do you think Jones will come off as a coach? Answer with a comment below or send a tweet to @alstover with the hashtag #RantMMA.