After last week's UFC 172, Dana White called Jon Jones the best fighter in the world, pound for pound, but also mentioned that something needs to be done about the light heavyweight champ's frequent eye-poking. That was about the right chord to hit, as far as we're concerned.
Jones is an amazing fighter and looked dominant against a top challenger Saturday night. In addition to receiving just-credit for being a dazzling fighter, however, it is entirely appropriate to bring up the issue of Jones' eye-poking.
He did it a couple times to Glover Teixeira at UFC 172 without penalty. Jones recently responded to the call for his eye-pokes to stop on Instagram in a very Jon Jones way - he posted something silly and embarrassing and then tried to erase it from memory soon after.
Jones posted a close-up video of his face mocking fans and critics of his eye-poking, essentially calling them cry babies. Then, it seems that he erased the video.
Unfortunately for Jones, the Internet has a way of saving things even when you try to erase things. Check out the video below.
On the one hand, we can see where Jones is coming from. The guy has a good deal of hate thrown his way by many fans and, no doubt, some try to take away from his amazing accomplishments.
This writer has already argued that Jones deserves none of our hate. He isn't beyond criticism, at times, however.
Look, Jon, you may make fun of fans who complain about your eye-poking but it is a serious issue. I don't think anyone can say that you've won any fights because of your eye-poking, but let's not act as if you don't do it all the time.
You poked Teixeira in the eyes multiple times. You poked Gustafsson in the eyes more than once. You poked "Rampage" Jackson in the eyes. You poked Lyoto Machida in the eyes. You poked Rashad Evans in the eyes. You poked Mauricio "Shogun" Rua in the eyes, while standing and while on the ground.
Dude, you pretty much poke everyone in the eye, all the time. You should stop.
So, while Jones has earned the right to bask in the glow of his well-earned victories, he should probably not gloat about all the cheating he does and gets away with in fights. Given that he took down the video on Instagram, he probably realizes that now.
This, of course, is on the heels of the played-down scandal of homophobic slurs coming from Jones' Instagram account before UFC 172, directed at a fight fan. Supposedly, Jones himself didn't post those offending things, even though he, Dana White and his management all seemed to give different alibis and explanations.
Jon Jones is a true champion and deserves our respect for it. Hopefully, for his sake, he learns to deal with the fame, hate and legitimate criticisms in a more professional way.