JON JONES was moments away from REFUSING to fight Ciryl Gane in his long-awaited comeback fight.
The former pound-for-pound king made his eagerly-anticipated return to the octagon on Saturday night in the main event of UFC 285 in Las Vegas.
AFPJon Jones was welcomed back to the octagon by Ciryl Gane at UFC 285[/caption]
GETTYJones claimed the heavyweight title with a submission victory over the Frenchman[/caption]
GettyBut the fight almost didn’t happen due to an issue with the tape on Jones’ foot[/caption]
GETTYJones would’ve refused to fight if Nevada Athletic Commission forced him to completely remove the tape[/caption]
Ciryl Gane welcomed Jones back to action and to the heavyweight division following his THREE-YEAR hiatus.
But the former long-reigning 205lb king almost didn’t walk into the octagon due to the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s issue with the taping of his left foot.
He revealed: “I used a different tape. I usually use a certain brand of tape. I’ll give them a shoutout, War Tape.
“I feel like it’s a lot stickier. I used the UFC’s tape tonight and as soon as my body started to sweat, the tape was sliding all over the place.
“So I made almost like a little cast around my toe that linked down to the middle of my foot so that the tape wouldn’t slide off my toes.
“And when I got out there, the commission was like, ‘You can’t tape your feet.’
“And I’m like, ‘Dude, I’ve always taped my feet. I’m not going to compete if I can’t tape my toes. I just won’t do it.’
“I want everyone to know that in the future. Thank God we didn’t have a disaster out there tonight.”
Most read in Sport
Jones, 35, has taped the big and middle toes on his left foot together ever since breaking the former of the two in the closing moments of his clash with Chael Sonnen ten years ago.
He told ESPN: “I broke my toe when fought Chael Sonnen years ago.
“And ever since then, every day at practice I tape my toe just to ensure that it doesn’t pop out.”
“The toe is totally fine but every once in a while, if I pivoted on it too hard, it sends the most excruciating pain up my body.
“And I just never want to compete without my toe taped again.”
Jones captured his second UFC title with a first-round submission victory over Gane, which came via a guillotine choke.
GettyJon Jones submitted Ciryl Gane in two minutes to claim the UFC heavyweight title[/caption]
In his post-fight interview with UFC commentator Joe Rogan:, he said: “First and foremost, I gotta give thanks to my lord and saviour Jesus Christ.
“Without him, I never would’ve made it this far.
“I’ve been working for this for such a long time, but I’ve been faithful to my goal. I’ve been faithful to the mission.
“There were days that I didn’t want to train but I was always there
“I knew if I got him down to the ground that the fight would be in my area as I’ve been wrestling since I was 12 years old.
“I actually felt a little bit goofy on the feet, but I want to say one last thing, ‘baa!’”