Biography and Profile of MMA Fighter Jon Jones

UFC 182 Jones v Cormier
Jon Jones versus Daniel Comier on January 3, 2015.

Steve Marcus/Stringer/Getty Images

To see MMA fighter Jon Jones compete even once is a treat. He simply does things that other fighters don't do. Spinning back elbows, unorthodox kicks, explosive takedowns, they're all fair game.

Just ask his opponents and training partners. He's not your everyday fighter. And here's his story.

Date of Birth and Family

Jon Jones was born on July 19, 1987, in Rochester, New York. His father is a pastor at a Pentecostal church in Endicott, New York, while his mother is a nurse. He has an older brother (Arthur) and younger brother (Chandler). Jon's older sister Carmen died of cancer before her 18th birthday.

Jones and his family are guided by their religion. In accordance with this, he has Philippians 4:13 tattooed on his chest, which was his sister’s favorite story from the Bible. He also has Chinese characters inked on his ribs that he thought represented his sister's name, but later found out actually spelled "peaceful warrior."

Training Camp and Fighting Organization

Jones trains with Jackson's Submission Fighting in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He fights for the UFC.

Brothers In Athletics

As great an athlete as Jones is, he would argue that he isn't even the best athlete in his family. Along with this, his older brother Arthur was a superstar in football and wrestling in high school. He then went on to play nose tackle at Syracuse, where the 6-foot-3, 300-pound athlete became the school's career leader in tackles for a loss with 38.5. Arthur was taken in the fifth round of the 2010 NFL draft by the Baltimore Ravens. In addition, Jon's younger brother, Chandler, has played as a defensive end for the New England Patriots and currently plays for the Arizona Cardinals.

MMA Beginnings

Jones began training in MMA when he found out that his high school sweetheart girlfriend, Jessie, was pregnant with their daughter Leah. He realized that he wasn't making enough as a bouncer to support his family, and so he walked into the BombSquad training facility with the idea of making money as an MMA fighter. Despite the fact that he had no formal submission or striking training, within weeks he won his first MMA fight over Brad Bernard by TKO on April 12, 2008. Later, the UFC picked him up. He won his won his initial fight for them over Andre Gusmao at UFC 87 by decision.

Wrestling Career

Jones' father had been a wrestler and fostered this path amongst his boys, who often wrestled and scrapped with one another. Jones later attended Union-Endicott High School, where he managed a 2005 state wrestling championship as a senior. Upon graduation, he attended Iowa Central Community College where he became a national wrestling Junior College Champion and earned an Associate's degree.

Fighting Style

Jones' wrestling background is obvious when he fights, in that his takedowns, takedown defense, and ground control skills are excellent. However, this is not what defines his fighting style. Rather, it could best be characterized as controlled explosiveness.

His takedowns are often brutal and theatrical. His striking is amazingly athletic, with spinning elbows and unorthodox kicks being the norm. What's more, he hits like a truck. In essence, Jones is a very well rounded fighter for a man that hasn't been fighting for very long, and his athleticism is very obvious.

Personal Life

Jones lives with his partner Jessie. They have two daughters named Leah and Carmen Nicole.

Some of Jon Jones' Greatest MMA Victories

Jones defeats Daniel Cormier by unanimous decision at UFC 182: Cormier was game and came to win this fight. He had the best grappling skills Jones had ever come up against in MMA, and the pre-fight trash talk was legendary. But in the end, Jones actually out-struck and wrestled his adversary. It was an amazing display, one worthy of a champion.

Jones defeats Alexander Gustafsson by unanimous decision at UFC 165: Jones was hurt for the first time in this one. Things were looking bleak against a fighter who was his size and at his skill level. But then, as great fighters do, he came back- in this case with a now legendary spinning elbow. And from there, it was his show as he came back from the depths of despair to win the closest fight of his career to date.

Jones defeats Rashad Evans by unanimous decision at UFC 145: Jones and Evans had trained together at Jackson's MMA before Jones accepted a fight with his former training partner. This led to bad blood and Evans leaving the camp. Though the former TUF champion fought hard and gave Jones perhaps the best run of his career, in the end, the winner of the feud and fight was obvious.

Jones defeats Mauricio "Shogun" Rua by third-round TKO at UFC 128: Jones absolutely demolished Shogun, a former PRIDE star and current UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. By defeating a legend so soundly, he once again solidified his position as a true great in the game. Besides, winning a UFC championship always makes your list of greatest victories, does it not?

Jones defeats Stephan Bonnar by unanimous decision at UFC 94: ​ Jones showed the athleticism in defeating a fan favorite in this one. Spinning back kicks, spinning back elbows, and more were on display during Jones' dominant performance here. With the win, fans truly began to realize the talent they had in front of them.