Jon Jones is one of the most dominant champions inside the octagon. He has reigned over the UFC light heavyweight division since March 2011. Some people will argue points like Jones hasn’t held the belt concurrently since he first won it, and this is true. But since he won the belt, no one has defeated him.
Out of the octagon antics have caused him to be stripped of the title more than once, however, his last thirteen fights have been championship fights. With his headliner at UFC 239 next month, here’s a list of fighters that could could possibly break Jones’ record as being the youngest champion in UFC history at the age of 23.
The bantamweight division is one the youngest divisions in the UFC as the average age in the division is 29 years old. The average age of every current champion in the UFC is 29 years old, with Daniel Cormier checking in at 40 (oldest) and Jessica Andrade at 27 (youngest).
Maycee “The Future” Barber could possible break the record.
There is one fighter who has a chance and is on pace to break Jon Jones record, and her name is Maycee Barber (7–0 MMA). She is only 20 years old and currently ranked #13 in the women’s flyweight division. She made quite an impression in her fight on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, winning via KO. Barber is an exhilarating fighter to watch, and she plans to continue her road to the title in 2019. She has also not been shy about her goal to break the record that Jon Jones set.
We must keep in mind Jones wasn’t actually supposed to fight for the belt when he did the first time. The champ Shogun Rua was scheduled to fight Jones’ teammate Rashad Evans, but Evans was injured while training. Jones was coming off a victory over the previously unbeaten Ryan Bader. Imagine how different the landscape would be if Evans never got injured?
There is a youngster out there training as we speak that could possibly be the next big thing in the UFC, however, we must wait and see if talent and training can catapult him/her to championship gold faster than Jon Jones. Until then, all eyes are on Maycee Barber to do what no one has been able to do.
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The Scrap’s Lee Brown is a 22-year Air Force Vet, fan of all sports – especially UFC, NFL & NBA, and cohost of Lee N Keys Real Talk Podcast. You can follow Lee on Twitter (@Levanstian757) and Instagram (@Va121Lee).