Once a pipe dream, a matchup between MMA superstars Jon Jones and Brock Lesnar is suddenly looking like a distinct possibility.
Last week, the two went back-and-forth through the media over a potential fight in the future, but it was considered nothing more than talk since Jones was just days away from a meeting with rival Daniel Cormier. Jones went on to knock Cormier out in spectacular fashion in the UFC 214 main event on Saturday to recapture the light heavyweight championship, and he used part of his post-fight interview time to confirm that he had Lesnar in his sights.
On Monday, Las Vegas betting site Bovada released odds for the Jones-Lesnar fight being booked and who they think is the favorite going in:
Will Jon Jones face Brock Lesnar in the UFC before July 15th 2018?
Yes -160 (5/8)
No +120 (6/5)
Jon Jones vs Brock Lesnar*
Jon Jones -350 (2/7)
Brock Lesnar +265 (53/20)
*odds only applicable if bout takes place before July 15, 2018
The initial projections tell us that Jones’s callout and Lesnar’s subsequent warning have given the oddsmakers enough evidence to believe that it’s safe to bet on two men fighting sometime in the next 12 months. Should the 40-year-old Lesnar return to the UFC, he is expected to have to serve out the remainder of an existing USADA suspension before being allowed to compete again.
Lesnar failed two tests for banned substances surrounding his win over Mark Hunt last July at UFC 200, and he received a one-year suspension that was frozen when he announced his retirement this past February.
“Bones” is a major favorite at -350. Despite giving up considerable poundage in a hypothetical matchup with Lesnar, a former UFC heavyweight champion, Jones appears to be at the peak of his powers after defeating Cormier a second time to improve his pro record to 23-1.
According to Best Fight Odds, Lesnar has never been more than a 2-1 underdog in any of his previous fights.