Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
While Greg Jackson initially struggled with the idea of training Jon Jones to fight his former fighter Rashad Evans, striking coach Mike Winkeljohn, who doesn't garner the same amount of attention as Jackson but is equally important to the Jackson-Winkeljohn team in New Mexico, had no such struggle.
Winklejohn recently told Bleacher Report's Ari LeVaux that he ultimately convinced Jackson to corner Jones against Evans at UFC 145 after feeling Evans criticized his former coach one too many times.
"I was always going to corner Jon because I was working with Jon since almost day 1 here, and Rashad had left camp, and Rashad is actually cool with that. We've spoken many times and he understands that everybody is out there to make a living, do their thing and we've got a good rapport.
"But he upset me in that he kept throwing Greg under the bus. Enough's enough. You have your disagreements, I understand that, but there's more important things out there and it's time for Greg to work in Jon's corner."
Winklejohn added that he is enjoying the challenge of preparing Jones to fight his former friend and training partner Evans.
"It's actually kind of exciting. It's not that hard at all. Everybody's got a job to do at the end of the day. It's not life or death -- I know people could get hurt -- but I work with Jon Jones now. Rashad had left. I still consider him someone that I would welcome in my house, but Jon's the guy that I hope I keep training for the rest of his career."
Check out the rest of the interview with the brutally honest Winklejohn below. He also discusses why he thinks the Jones-Evans odds are fair, how he sees the UFC 145 main event playing out, Melvin Guillard's departure from Team Jackson-Winklejohn, Donald Cerrone's next fight and much more.
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