Jon “Bones” Jones, the current longtime UFC Light Heavyweight champion and younger brother of Ravens defensive end Art Jones, came to the Under Armour Performance Center to talk to the team about what it takes to be a champion and focusing on the next opponent.
But of course, an older brother can’t let the kid steal the show. Art announced to the team that he taught Jon all he knows about fighting.
“Well come on out here and prove it right now,” Jon said.
So did he?
“Art declined, I’m here to report,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said. “Wisely.”
Jon is considered by many to be the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. But in a family with two NFL players (youngest brother Chandler is a linebacker for the Patriots), there is obviously some competition about who’s toughest.
Art and Jon traded jabs (literally) throughout a joint press conference Wednesday like highly competitive brothers would.
Question: Who can hit a quarterback harder?
Jon: “Oh big Art for sure. You see that big rump?” [slaps him hard in the butt]
Art: “You guys are about to get a free pay-per-view fight in a second.”
Question: What would happen now if you brothers fought in a basement?
Jon: “Chandler would be watching. Chandler would probably be making an Instagram video. Kickboxing, if I had room I’d be pretty good against Art because I can stick a move. In a small, confined area, I’d get killed – without a doubt. This guy [Art is] a two-time state champion wrestler. … If Arthur gets his hands on you, you’re in trouble. So I’ll give it to him. But if I can stick it to him, it would be a different case.” [lightly slaps him across the face]
Art: “Let’s make a little wall. He’s really testing me.”
The whole interaction was pretty hilarious. As the younger brother (by 3 ½ years) to a black belt who insisted on practicing his moves on me, I totally loved it.
The brothers have plenty of ammunition to brag to each other about, and they enjoy pushing each other’s buttons.
Jon is at the top of his field in the UFC. Chandler is a first-round pick, something he can always hold over fifth-round pick Art’s head. But Art is a Super Bowl champion, and does it get any better than that?
Despite having the most … rotund … body of the three brothers, Art may actually be the best athlete.
I don’t think Jon could play football. But Art, someday, could be a pretty good UFC fighter. Jon agrees.
“Arthur was always better at wrestling than I was. If I can understand martial arts, I think he would figure it out too within two years’ time,” said Jon, who rose to the top of the sport very quickly.
“I think if he could get down to 265 [pounds] again, I just think he would be so ready for the UFC heavyweight division for sure. I’m thinking about injuring him now so we can get him into the UFC a little quicker.”
And with that, I stopped laughing.