A megafight between Israel Adesanya and Jon Jones is in the plans of UFC boss Dana White.
Adesanya destroyed Paulo Costa in two rounds to retain his middleweight title last weekend to stay undefeated, and has since engaged in a vicious war of words with Jones on social media.
Things turned sour when the pair mentioned their rivals’ family members in their posts, including Adesanya questioning if Jones’ late mother would be proud of him.
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“Bring mention to a mans [sic] dead mother, but refuses to fight. That’s the most sus move he’s made so far,” Jones wrote on Twitter.
The pair continued to trade insults, labelling each other “b*tch” and “p*ssy” on Friday.
Jones, who has vacated the light-heavyweight title to campaign as a heavyweight, asked Adesanya to fight him “at any weight in 2021”.
White told News Corp Australia that an Adesanya-Jones showdown is on his wish list.
“100 per cent, if he continues to win and that’s the fight he wants, I’d love to do it,” White said.
“Jon’s been talking a lot of smack about him, so if Israel says ‘Hey let’s do this’, I don’t see how Jon Jones says ‘No’.”
Jones (26-1, one no contest) is widely considered the greatest UFC fighter of all time, having lost just once via disqualification, while Adensanya (20-0) has emerged as the sport’s next major superstar.
White said Adesanya’s future would be full of major bouts after his bout with the previously unbeaten Costa broke the UFC’s pay-per-view record in New Zealand, where Adesanya lives.
“It’s all about fights, the reason this thing was so big and got so much attention was because he was fighting a guy people believed would be in his face, really go after him and make a fight out of it,” White said.
“They were two of the best in the world, both undefeated, squaring off against each other, and he proved that he is the man.
“Now it’s all about big fights. You’ve got to put him in fights where people believe the opponent can win.
“The result of the fight, I was shocked. I was predicting fight of the year, Costa was going to put pressure on him and make it an absolute dogfight.
“I expected it to be one notch above the Kelvin Gastelum fight, and Israel basically went after him, you could see the confidence in him, you could see he was like, ‘This is my f—ing house’.
“So he’s totally come into his own here and feels like the UFC is his house.”
Australia’s Rob Whittaker has the opportunity to fight Adesanya next, with his October 25 (AEST) bout against American Jared Cannonier now a title eliminator.
Whittaker lost the middleweight crown to Adesanya last year, but returned to the octagon in July with a unanimous points victory against Darren Till.
However, Adesanya clearly favours Cannonier against Whittaker.
“I think Jared is going to dust Robert Whittaker and I look forward to fighting him,” Adesanya said.
“I think he’s going to get it done. I’m rooting for him. But if Robert Whittaker wins and he wants to get knocked out a third time, I can make that happen too.”