The bane of every male adolescent's existence was hearing from their school crush that they were "too nice," only to see her jump on the back of some motorcycle and take off with some guy (probably named Brad) who got labeled "the bad boy," as they drove off into the sunset.
Over and over it's been etched into our minds that "nice guys finish last," but why?
Probably because doing the right thing is boring! It's why we, time after time, idolize the villain. Whether it's Darth Vader, Hannibal Lecter, or to some degree Donald Trump, America has always had a strange attraction to somebody who speaks their uninhibited thoughts, takes the road less traveled and chooses not to play by the rules.
If you look at the history of the sport, MMA is no exception. So then why is Jon Jones running from who he really is? The UFC's greatest villain.
I think one of the pioneers of this whole "bad guy" concept was... no, not Conor McGregor but Chael Sonnen, who not only accepted his role as the bad guy, but demanded it.
In his most recent interview with Joe Rogan on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast, Sonnen mentioned his time on The Ultimate Fighter with Wanderlei Silva, where at one point he literally had to pull Silva aside and say, "Hey, this is the storyline. The bad guy has come to Brazil." (He gestured to himself.) "Wanderlei gets to be the white knight on the horse... let's continue the script." This was to ensure Silva wasn't going to demand Chael apologize on-camera for their scuffle because Chael thought it would create empathy for his "character," something no great villain wants.
He quickly switched the focus of his point to the subject at hand, Sonnen added, "You then have Jon Jones, who is a real-life heel, that wants to be loved and for some reason, the crowd used to be against him, and now that they find out who he really is, they love it."
He's got a real point there.
When we were calling Jon "Bones" Jones the GOAT was during the same exact time we secretly knew he would be dishing out blows by day and sucking in blow by night. He hit a damn pregnant lady's car and chose to flee the scene. Now if that isn't a move done by only the most heinous of comic book villains, I don't know what is.
Yet...we cheered for him.
After being pulled from UFC 200, now more so than at any other time, Jones is at a real crossroads. Not with whether he'll fight again or not, but with which Jon Jones he will be once he returns.
He got busted for steroids. Great. OWN IT, Jonny boy! What a dastardly thing to do! Don't cry and give us the same ol' B.S. by pleading ignorance, because, as Chael Sonnen told The Joe Rogan Experience, "If you're explaining, you're losing."
You now have a full two years (or whatever USADA determines) to build up the zero f**ks Jon Jones we all rallied behind and were ready to pay to watch take down another hero...and like all good villains, you get to disappear into the shadows for a bit before making an unexpected return, ready for your revenge.
Here's when Jon spoke with Champions.co at the UFC 200 media scrum RIGHT before the news broke. Pretty crazy to listen to it, knowing what we know now.