Dana White says Jon Jones ‘ready to go,’ expects him to fight Francis Ngannou or Stipe Miocic in UFC return

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Jon Jones’ return to the UFC perhaps could be getting closer to come to fruition.

The former UFC light heavyweight champion is apparently ready to make his long-awaited comeback after a more than two-year absence, according to UFC president Dana White. Speaking Monday on “The Jim Rome Show,” White said that Jones is just waiting on an opponent but that he’s good to fight once again.

“Jon Jones is ready to go,” White said. “We’re just waiting for an opponent. It’s either going to be Francis (Ngannou), depending on how long his knee is going to take to recover, or Stipe Miocic.”

Jones hasn’t fought since defending the light heavyweight title against Dominick Reyes at UFC 247 in February 2020. He vacated the belt that same year out of interest to move up to the heavyweight division and challenge for the title there. Through the process to move up a weight class, Jones has been vocal in the past about contractual issues with the UFC. However, that seems to be a thing of the past as he closes in on a return.

“It’s very interesting because I’m a huge believer in ring rust,” White said. “But for all the negative things you could say about Jon Jones and his personal life and things that have happened, he’s the best. He’s definitely the best of all time.”

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Miocic, a former UFC heavyweight champion, has yet to be booked to fight. He last competed in March 2021 when he lost his belt by knockout to now champion Francis Ngannou.

On the other hand, Ngannou is close to becoming a free agent, and he’s also experienced contractual issues with the UFC. He’s currently recovering from a knee surgery and targets a return for late 2022 or early 2023. Ngannou fought out his contract earlier this year with a title defense against Ciryl Gane at UFC 270. He’s shown in interest in boxing British star Tyson Fury.