Jon Jones returned to the Octagon this past weekend at UFC 197 after fifteen months away. How successful he was in that return is up to everyone to decide on their own.
Some feel he was a bit "rusty" including his rival and current UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Daniel Cormier. Rusty or not though, Jones won the fight against Ovince Saint Preux via a unanimous decision.
So now what?
Only one fight, at this point, can happen and that's a rematch with Cormier. The only left to do is decide WHEN the fight is going to take place, and according to UFC president, Dana White, it could happen sooner rather than later.
After Jones' win Saturday night, White told Brett Okamoto of ESPN.com that Jones-Cormier II could replace McGregor-Diaz II at UFC 200. As long as the two men are healthy and ready to go.
Health concerns are the biggest issue. Cormier was forced to pull out of his fight with Jones at UFC 197 due to a leg injury. A leg injury that Cormier claims SHOULD be healed and ready to go by the time UFC 200 rolls around, but that's not a guarantee.
As for Jones, he says he's ready to go but was pictured getting into a wheelchair after his fight Saturday with OSP.
The original main event of UFC 200 was a rematch between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz, but that all went up in smoke last week after Conor McGregor refused to attend a media event. McGregor wanted to take a stand against the UFC and the level of promotion it holds its fighter to. That stunt backfired and White pulled McGregor from the card.
Diaz, who made it very clear that he doesn't want to fight anyone BUT McGregor, ultimately forced White to pull the fight from the event all together. Now, rather than look for a replacement for McGregor, the UFC is looking for a fight to take over as the main event. A fight that White has claimed will be a title fight.
Nothing makes more sense for it to be Jones and Cormier duking it out for the UFC light heavyweight belt. As of now, Cormier is the current holder of the belt, while Jones is the interim champion until they meet in the cage and figure things out.
We could see that happen on July 9, when UFC 200 takes place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.