The light heavyweight rivalry between Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson has finally come to an end as Jones finished Alexander Gustafsson in the third round to claim the vacant UFC Light Heavyweight championship at the Forum in Inglewood, California.
The rematch was nothing like the first fight, as this time Jones completely mauled Gustafsson and finished him. Jones set the pace in the opening round, as he hit Gustafsson with brutal leg kicks and cracked him with sharp hands any time Gustafsson tried to close the distance.
The second round was a bit better for Gustafsson, he pocked Jones but ultimate Jones rallied back to win the rounds in the closing seconds. The third was completely one-sided, as he mounted himself on top of Gustafsson to ultimately knock him out.
This is the third time Alexander Gustafsson has suffered a loss in a title fight and his hopes to get a shot at the UFC gold doesn’t look very bright, but he hasn’t given up just yet.
“Yeah, it’s not over yet,” he said. “Let’s see what’s next. Like always, you do this for a reason, and it’s to compete with the best guys out there, and that’s what I’ll do. I will do it as long as I think it’s fun.”
He said that Jones rematch meant so much for him and a loss is a major setback in his UFC career.
“It meant everything to me,” he said. “This is not football or tennis we’re practising – it’s pure fighting, and every fight is life-changing for you. It’s a big setback for me losing to Jon again, but at the end of the day, it’s a sport, and we do this because we love it.”
Amidst all of it, Gustafsson hasn’t ruled out a possibility of moving up to fight in the heavyweight division. With Jones planning to stay at LHW and with so much public interest in a trilogy fight between Jones and Cormier, there’s a chance that DC might move down and it could mean a big opening for Gustafsson.
“Yeah, of course,” Gustafsson said when asked about a potential move. “The heavyweight division is also an alternative. I’m here to fight, either if it’s at light heavy or heavy. I have to talk to my coaches and see what’s next.”
What do you guys think should Alexander Gustafsson’s next move should be?