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UFC light and heavyweight champion Jon (Bones) Jones, involved in a wage dispute with the UFC, told his 2.3 million Twitter followers on Sunday that he was giving up his title.
“In lightweight – veni, vidi, vici,” Jones tweeted, using the Latin phrase “I came, I saw, I won,” attributed to Julius Caesar.
When asked if he renounced his title, he tweeted “Yes”.
When a follower suggested that he hurt himself more than the UFC, Jones replied, “I get hurt every time I go there and I punch my head and I don’t think not that my salary is worth it. “
Jones, 32, who ranks first in the UFC pound-by-pound fighters ranking, has been using social media for the past few days to wage a war of words with the UFC over his wages.
He had planned a super-fight with Francis Ngannou, who is currently ranked among the heavyweight contenders, but said the UFC did not want to pay him enough.
Asked about Jones’ complaints on social media, UFC president Dana White said the fighter wanted “crazy” money, citing requests for $ 15 million, $ 20 million and $ 30 million. dollars.
“He can do whatever he wants. He can sit, he can fight, he can do anything,”
White told reporters after Saturday’s Fight Night card in Las Vegas.
“Jon Jones can say what he wants publicly. It is his gift from God here in America,” he added. “He can say what he wants. And when he’s ready to come back to fight, he can.”
White said his lawyer, Hunter Campbell, had offered to browse Jones with the numbers, but to no avail.
This drew a sarcastic response to Jones’ Twitter.
“I love the way you try to paint this picture of me being an angry guy who disrespectfully asks for money. And then take my stuff out of the cage to justify paying me under tens of millions for years. “
“At no time did I ask you for anything Dana, I just asked for a great fight and asked to be compensated,” he said in another tweet.
Although he is considered to be perhaps the greatest MMA fighter of all time, Jones has been in the news for the wrong reasons most often since he was involved in a hit and run accident with a pregnant woman stripped of her title in 2015.
Jones has defended the 205 pound title 11 times and has been stripped of the champion belt twice, once for violating the UFC athlete code of conduct (in 2015) and once for failing to a drug test (in 2017). He also lost the provisional title in 2016 after a positive screening test.
Jones is 26-1-0 with a draw.
The loss occurred by disqualification in 2009 for an illegal nudge against Matt (The Hammer) Hamill, who was savage before the save. A 2017 win over Daniel Cormier was turned into a non-contest after Jones tested positive for steroids.
White said Jones could have been MMA’s “LeBron” without his antics outside the cage.
The UFC did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday.