Jon Jones bites back at Khabib Nurmagomedov being called the UFC’s GOAT

There are many ways to look at the career that Khabib Nurmagomedov has had, but nearly anyone can agree that it has been spectacular.

Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones doesn’t disagree with those that say Khabib has had an outstanding, even dominant career. What he does disagree with is those that are now calling him the Greatest of All Time.

Even UFC president Dana White, following Khabib’s submission victory over Justin Gaethje at UFC 254 on Saturday, called Khabib the “baddest motherf—er on the planet.”

Of course, there probably is some “recency bias” as UFC commentator Jon Anik acknowledged, but that plays a part in what is being argued: GOAT status or official pound-for-pound ranking.

“The pressure that Khabib puts on you is unbelievable. Literally didn’t respect his punching power. Just walked right into everything and did what he wanted.

“Then the second round, he keeps the pressure on. For that submission, he locks it up, gets it and chokes him out. Unbelievable,” White continued.

“He is the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world, and you seriously have to start putting him up there at GOAT status with whoever else you think is the GOAT.”

That’s actually an important distinction that White made. While there is an official men’s and a women’s pound-for-pound UFC ranking, it is not synonymous with being the GOAT, though both are highly subjective.

The pound-for-pound ranking lumps all weight classes together, listing the top fighters at any given point in time. The GOAT status is more of a career retrospective ranking.

For instance, officially retired UFC fighters are not listed in the pound-for-pound rankings. Randy Couture, Georges St-Pierre, Chuck Liddell, Matt Hughes, and any other number of highly regarded fighters are not available for ranking. Only fighters currently under contract are available to be considered the current best pound-for-pound fighter.

There is no official GOAT ranking. Who is thought of as the GOAT is simply a water cooler or bar top discussion that people have on their own.

But in the same vein, Jones has every reason to have the

“water cooler” discussion on Twitter with other fighters, pundits, and fans, to make his case for being the GOAT, while still respecting what Khabib has achieved.

Here’s how Jon Jones compared his career vs. that of Khabib Nurmagomedov

Until I take that heavily crown, I grant you the spot. 🤙🏾 Enjoy Champ

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 24, 2020

I want to congratulate Khabib for an outstanding career. I know he made his father along with millions of fans around the world incredibly proud today. May God continue to bless him on his journey.

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 24, 2020

Definitely a powerful moment, but my logic is definitely not clouded.

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 24, 2020

I’m just going to ask for the heavyweight championship belt and see if they give it to me. Since we can just ask for things now 🤷🏾‍♂️

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

The same Company who accused me of possible steroids vindicated me from it. If I just started fighting for titles four fights ago, I look like an absolute beast too. But OK, I guess you’re only worth your last performance in this game🥴

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

I got signed by the UFC literally nine months after my very first MMA practice. Unheard of

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

when I signed with Ufc I was one of the youngest fighters on the roster, youngest champion in the history of the sport and have only had three competitive fights.

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

I understand most people have never been number one in their community, state, let alone the world. My competitive nature won’t allow me to just stand by and see someone ask to be considered the best. I’ve sacrificed too much blood

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

Yet people want me to stay quiet and let him have his moment while I just sit back and watch my hard work get moved down the rankings. It’s not fair to my family, or the team of people who have sacrificed to get me this far

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

Over 50% of my career have been title fights. LeBron James is allowed to win a game by one point but not Jon Jones. Man I have really spoiled you guys

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

If we’re having a popularity contest, I’d gladly take my L. This shit has nothing to do with fame or being a good person. I’ve giving my whole adult life to this game, I owe it to myself to speak up.

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

Not salty at all, I really do respect Khabib, I honor the type of man he is. But being the best is earned not given. Unfortunately four title fights aint it, no matter how much we all like em

— BONY (@JonnyBones) October 25, 2020

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