Jon Jones is not only the UFC light-heavyweight champion, but he’s also the reigning king of the verbal faux pas. Long before the UFC 151 debacle, Jones had a difficult time warming up to MMA fans because of the things he would say. Many of his remarks during and after the 151 clusterfuck only exasperated fan sentiment toward him. But finally the poor bastard got one right, and seems to have learned a valuable lesson in deflecting blame. Jones spoke to the Montreal Gazette and had this to say:
“I think the UFC has learned a lesson of making sure they stay loyal to the fans and give them full cards.”
BOOYAH! Most serious observers have already pointed out the obvious that aside from the main event, UFC 151 was a piss card, but this is the first time Jones has acknowledged it. This is an important step in the area of blame deflection. But what’s most important, what makes the point is the part about staying loyal to the fans. It’s a clever bit of obviousness that Jones uses to actually sell the deflection.
Who people blame for any situation where multiple parties are involved is a matter of personal opinion, and in this instance there was no shortage of blame to go around. It’s a question of using rhetorical context to support a fact that sheds a positive light on you, and I believe Jones succeeded in this regard. Most people have moved on from this, so this little tidbit is unlikely to make anyone who already views Jon Jones as a douche to think otherwise. But the guy is only 25 years old and has a lot of years in the spotlight ahead of him. This unfortunate episode could serve him well in the long run.
I have no idea if he hired someone to show him the way or if he just got smart and took his cues from Dana White. White was relentless on Jones immediately, and look what happened, in the first few days everyone was blaming Jones. White’s been in this business a long time. He knows his shit. Jones is a newbie, but he’s learning.