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Monday, Apr 05, 2021

Mike Winkeljohn Believes Francis Ngannou vs. Jon Jones is a “$50 Million Fight”

Jon Jones (image via UFC / YouTube)

By FCF Staff

Jon Jones has repeatedly said he wants a bump in pay, before he fights Francis Ngannou, and it looks like his coach understands why.

Ever since Ngannou knocked out Stipe Miocic last month to become the UFC’s heavyweight champ, Jones has made it clear he wants a pay raise for the title fight. So much so, Jones has called on the UFC to release him, if the company isn’t willing to pay him significantly more.

Recently, Jones’ longtime striking coach, Mike Winkeljohn, spoke with Submission Radio. While talking about the much-discussed, Ngannou – Jones bout, Winkeljohn said this (quotes via MMA Fighting).

“Gosh, I look at the big fights,” Winkeljohn said (transcription via Submission Radio’s Denis Shkuratov). “I think this fight can be easily as [big as] some of the big Mayweather fights out there. What did Floyd Mayweather make? A hundred million? I don’t know. You know, that type of thing. [Mayweather] was kind of his own promoter. So, Jon’s gotta share that with the UFC as far as on pay-per-view buys.

“But I don’t see why it wouldn’t be a $50 million fight. And the UFC still makes bank, and is able to pay off a lot of the debt they have and go forward. I think the UFC needs a superstar like Jon Jones. I think Conor [McGregor] was the guy for a while, and he’s fallen off. But those big names is what makes the UFC money, ultimately.”

And in addition, Winkeljohn had this to say about UFC President Dana White.

“You know what, Dana is the best in the world at the fight business, there’s no doubt about that,” Winkeljohn said. “And for a reason. Jon’s the best in the world for what he does, and for a reason. So, of course they each went their own [way]. To be expected. That’s the game… They’ve got to decide how much they want to sell that many pay-per-views and how much is Jon Jones worth to them to sell that many pay-per-views.

“And Jon’s gotta decide, where is that point where I’m motivated to take that risk to continue at my legacy and being the best ever to play the game…Something can always possibly happen. So, is it worth the risk? How much money is worth it to take that risk?”

The 33-year-old Jones (26-1) hasn’t fought now since February, 2020, when he recorded a split decision win over Dominick Reyes.

posted by FCF Staff @ 2:35 pm
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