Jon Jones’ dominance of the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s light-heavyweight division has him thinking about a move up to heavyweight.
At the UFC World Tour stop Tuesday in Los Angeles, Jones (18-1) said he’d consider the shift further should he beat Alexander Gustafsson Sept. 21 in Toronto.
“I’m getting older, stronger – why not?,” Jones said after initially balking at the idea by telling reporters, “I have a lot of business to do in this division,” where challengers include Glover Teixeira and Lyoto Machida.
Jones, 26, said he’s intrigued by the idea of fighting someone like either heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez or his Oct. 19 challenger Junior Dos Santos.
“It’d be a great thing because I’d bring a lot of speed against those bigger guys,” Jones said. “And my style is dynamic in a way I don’t think they’ve experienced.”
In addition to being a well-schooled wrestler, Jones is an acrobatic fighter capable of flying kicks and spinning backfists.
“I don’t see any heavyweights throwing flying knees or spinning elbows. I’d be faster and a handful.”
Velasquez said he’d like to see Jones move up in weight, but noted Jones has work to do in this bout and with the potential challenge of Velasquez’s training friend from San Jose, Daniel Cormier.
“That’d be good, definitely, but he has his work cut out for him,” Velasquez said.
First, Jones has to get through Gustafsson (15-1), a Swede who has recently beaten former champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Thiago Silva.
“I see a lot of things I can get to him with and I’m working hard,” Gustafsson, 26, said. “It’s my time. I’m on a winning streak. The belt is mine.”
Gustafsson agreed with the idea he’d like to make it a toughman-type fight, finding out if Jones can take his best punch rather than allow Jones’ tactics come into play.