Normally one to stay out of online banter and trash talk, UFC President Dana White has decided to speak up after heavyweight boxing champ Tyson Fury and UFC counterpart Jon Jones had a bit of a back-and-forth on social media recently.
The online spat stemmed from comments Joe Rogan made a few days back, suggesting that in a locked room (as opposed to a boxing match), Jones would be the man left standing.
Fury took exception, and lashed out at Rogan, only for Jones to respond — and Tyson quickly backtracked, saying “I’m not a cage fighter.” Considering no one ever claimed Jones to be the better boxer — something “Bones” himself acknowledged — that seemed to be the end of it.
Cue Dana White putting on his promoter’s hat. In an interview with The Bro Bible, ahead of the latest Power Slap event, White expressed interest promoting a Fury crossover to the UFC.
“Jon Jones is the baddest dude on the planet. There’s no debate, there’s no denying it,” White said of who the better fighter (as opposed to boxer) was. “If Tyson Fury really wants to fight Jon Jones in the UFC, I will make it happen. Here’s my thing, right now, to Tyson Fury: Tyson, if you’re serious, let me know.”
The UFC president noted that he and Fury “have a good relationship. I like Tyson Fury.”
Asked how he thought the fight would go, “let’s find out,” White answered. “Listen, we can talk all we want,” he added. “Tyson can talk, Jon Jones can talk, I can talk, we can all talk. Let’s do it. I mean if Tyson’s serious, and he wants to do it, listen, I got Floyd Mayweather to fight, we paid Floyd. We got Floyd the number he wanted. If Tyson Fury is serious, and he wants to fight Jon Jones in the UFC, let’s start talking.”
The answer to this one is likely a firm no, given Fury has already said he’s not a cage fighter. Thus far, while numerous MMA fighters have made the jump to boxing, boxers have remained hesitant to try their hand in the cage — at least on the men’s side of things. Among the ladies, Holly Holm, Heather Hardy, Amanda Serrano, and Claressa Shields are among the many who have opted to go the other direction, to varying degrees of success.
James Toney remains the exception, after facing Randy Couture at UFC 118 in 2010.