How Jon Jones transformed his body for his heavyweight debut
Jon Jones, one of the greatest fighters in UFC history, will face Ciryl Gane at UFC 285 this Saturday night in his first fight at heavyweight.
The main event: Jones is aiming to become the eighth multi-division champion in UFC history. If successful, he would join Randy Couture, BJ Penn, Conor McGregor, Georges St-Pierre, Daniel Cormier, Amanda Nunes, and Henry Cejudo. Jones has not fought since March 2020, when he defended his light-heavyweight belt for the last time.
Jones’ heavyweight transformation: Jones added about 40 pounds of muscle to his frame, going from 220 pounds to 260 pounds. He followed a strict diet and a rigorous strength and conditioning program under coach Mike Winkeljohn.
He also improved his power and explosiveness, while maintaining his speed and agility. He lifted heavy weights and performed plyometric exercises such as box jumps and sprints.
He worked on his cardio and endurance, as he expects a tough fight against Gane, who is known for his high pace and volume. He did long runs, bike rides, swimming, and sparring sessions.
The big picture: Jones vs. Gane is one of the most anticipated fights of the year as it’ll crown the new heavyweight champion after the former titleholder, Francis Ngannou, departed the promotion after contract disputes. Jones vs. Gane will be a clash of styles, skills, and sizes that you don’t want to miss.
What they’re saying: Jones said he sees “holes” in Gane’s game that he plans to exploit at UFC 285. He labeled Gane as “predictable” and the most “incomplete” fighter in the UFC heavyweight division. Jones went as far as to say that he believes that a light heavyweight version of former rival Thiago Santos would beat a heavyweight Ciryl Gane.
Gane said he respects Jones as a legend but does not fear him as an opponent. He said he is confident in his abilities and ready to shock the world by beating Jones.
By the numbers: Jones weighed in at 248 pounds on Friday, half a pound heavier than Gane. This is the first time Jones has weighed more than his opponent since 2011.
Jones has a record of 26 wins, one loss, and one no-contest. He has never been defeated by knockout or submission. He holds the record for most title defenses (14) and most wins (20) in UFC light-heavyweight history.
Gane has a record of 11 wins and one loss. He has five wins by knockout, three by submission, and three by decision. Gane is a former interim champion of the division, having defeated Derrick Lewis at UFC 265 last August.
Watch: UFC 285: Jones vs Gane live on ESPN+ PPV this Saturday night at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.
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