Jon Jones never found himself in trouble in his fight with Ovince Saint Preux at UFC 197, but it wasn’t the dominating fight that he wanted. Saint Preux was able to survive all five rounds against a Jones that looked a little tentative to pull the trigger. Jones original opponent for the event, Daniel Cormier, said that he believed if Jones had fought that same way and it was against him, there was ‘no way’ he would have been beaten:
He got the job done,” Cormier said on FOX Sports 1’s post-fight show. “A lot of times, most guys, they don’t have their best performance, they lose. They don’t get it done. So it shows how special Jon is. That being said, very disappointed that I didn’t get to compete tonight because I do believe that if he showed up in the form that he did tonight, or if this is the new Jon Jones, there’s no way that guy can beat me.”
Although Cormier gave minimal credit to his rival Jones, he was willing to give much more to Saint Preux. “OSP” replaced the injured Cormier in the main event bout on less than one month’s notice and went five rounds with the fighter many call the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the sport. Moreover, he apparently did it with a broken arm in the final two rounds. Cormier said that deserves praise.
“Not only did he do a good job, his coaches did a good job,” Cormier said. “They prepared him. They had him ready for a five-round fight in three weeks – that’s hard to do. They worked his takedown defense. … I thought he did a good job. He should be proud of himself.”