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Jon Jones has sober message to Daniel Cormier: ‘I beat him in my prime of partying’

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When it’s all said and done, we may look back at the Jon Jones-Daniel Cormier feud and miss those glorious exchanges. After having to deal with each other off and on for much of the last two years, the talking has grown increasingly personal heading into UFC 200. Now the sniping has gotten familiar and subtle. Everything has become a little more matter-of-fact. There are even pleasantries in the mix.

One might say that their rivalry has matured into something more blunt, with all the dirty laundry aired, and both men having grown into themselves. Cormier, who holds the UFC light heavyweight title, has matured as an analyst, as thrived as a champion. Jones, who holds the UFC’s interim title (though many still view him as the actual champion, because he never lost the belt), has been forced to recognize his mistakes in life.

And everything was fair game again on Wednesday, when the two came together at the UFC 200 press conference in Las Vegas. Just three nights before they trade punches — perhaps for the last time — both got in a few jabs beforehand.
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When asked how difficult it was to listen to Jones taunt him and rub the victory he holds over him at UFC 182 in his face, Cormier said the time for talk was over. 

"No, not really. This is a game, you know — to him this is a game," Cormier said. "This is not a game to me. I’m not here to talk and to jibber-jabber and argue like we’ve done before. I’m here to kick his ass on Saturday. So I’d rather than show him than tell him again. I’m done. I’m done with all the talking and jibber-and-jabbering. I’m ready to fight. I can show him the things that we’ve done in training better than I can actually say it to you here."

The two will square off in the main event of the UFC’s big pay-per-view at the T-Mobile Arena on Saturday night. It feels like forever in the making, with the fighters having fought once and been book on a couple of other occasions just to see the fight fall through.

The talk in the media has been ongoing, with each man responding to the other’s latest volley on insults. Recently Cormier had referred to Jones as 28-year old middle-aged man, which was brought up to Jones at the press conference. 

"Well, yeah, DC said that because I used to be such a party animal that I burned my candle at both ends, that I’m 28 but really I’m 40 or whatever," Jones said. "I think misery loves company. I think it’s apparent right now, when you look at me and you look at him, you can tell he’s had a hard weight cut. Look at his face, he’s all drawn out. I mean, he just got over a knee injury. I feel fine. I’m not even sure if he’s knee’s 100 percent. I doubt it, I’ll test it out on Saturday.

"But, yeah, I feel great. How can you convince someone that getting sober and living more healthy will make you older. I beat him in the prime of my partying. So, we’ll see. We’ll see who’s the 40-year old on Saturday."

When Cormier was asked if Jones thinks he’s in his head, Cormier said there was some legitimacy in that.

"You know obviously, I think about him daily, about the fighter, so he is in my head in that aspect," Cormier said. "But man, if you spend a day in my life, with all the joking and manipulating and all this other stuff, you would know that this guy doesn’t have the ability to actually get in my head as he thinks. But, it’s good. He’s in my head because we’re fighting, but the ability to manipulate me, that’s not real at all."