A razor-thin decision in favour of the champ saw the belt return home with its long-time owner Jon Jones but over the course of the twenty-five minutes of action – Dominick Reyes, in many peoples’ eyes, did enough to take home the victory.
The night, on whole, was filled to the brim with controversy but as you would expect, it was the main-event’s eventual decision that left the public divided more than anything else.
For the opening three rounds, Reyes was implementing the perfect gameplan – using his speed, power, and overall athleticism to beat Jon to most shots, even seemingly stunning him on one or two occasions.
Speaking to Ariel Helwani during a recent episode of his ESPN chat-show, the UFC 247 headliner spoke about his time in there with the champ – drawing attention to his incredible ability to take a shot directly on the jaw.
“Well, first of all, shoutout to Jon. His chin was amazing in this fight. He really doesn’t get enough credit for his chin.
“I was hitting him with some bombs and he knows it, we know it. So shoutout to Jon for his chin.”
Reyes is a power-puncher at his very core. Sure, his countering ability and underrated footwork combine with his other attributes to make the fighter we see every time he makes the walk, but when push comes to shove, Dominick Reyes is looking to knock you out.
Jones’ ability to take Reyes’ best punches consistently further proved that his chin remains as strong as ever – despite the years and years he has spent at the very pinnacle of the sport.
Citing his poker-face as impressive, the defeated challenger went on to stress that Jones’ indomitable toughness was the only thing standing between him and his first defeat as a mixed martial artist.
“The biggest thing that surprised me was his toughness. Incredible toughness. I was ripping the body and he was just, he had quite the poker face, man. That shocked me.”
And while an immediate rematch seems unlikely, Reyes made an attempt to appeal to Bones’ competitive spirit – telling him that both men know exactly how things went down on Saturday night.
With Reyes being seen by many as the fight’s rightful victor – perhaps Jon’s commitment to his constant strive for dominance will be enough to see him push for another crack at this young, talented contender.
“As a fighter, you know how the rounds go. You know exactly what happens. He knows I won. Deep down in his heart, he knows I won.
“And him being Jon Jones, a great martial artist himself, I feel like he would want a rematch for his own mind knowing that I won that fight.”