At Cage Warriors 108 on October 12th in Cardiff, rising star Mason Jones (7-0 MMA) will be in the main event slot for the first time in his career.
With Jack Shore’s departure to the UFC, Cage Warrior’s have looked to Jones to be the face of their operation in Wales. One of the most exciting prospects in MMA, Mason Jones has star potential he is eager to fulfill by becoming a champion and beating whoever is put in front of him.
Easy Win against a Heavy Hitter
Last time out, Jones picked up a unanimous decision victory against heavy hitter Donovan Desmae (12-6 MMA) at Cage Warriors 104 on April 27. After plenty of time to reflect on the fight, Jones was more than happy to break down what he believed was a good night’s work.
“Overall, I won easy. It was probably the easiest fight of my career performance wise,” said Jones. “It was the first fight I’ve had when I haven’t had a mark on my face, whereas I cut him open in three places.”
Always his harshest critic, Jones was keen to highlight areas of improvement during his dissection of the bout. “Negatively looking into it, I made a lot of mistakes in different areas, minor slips up,” said Jones. “I should have finished in the second. I hurt him with a sidekick and followed up with a sidekick. I think I winded him. I should have put more pressure on him.”
Desmae’s stock has risen since his defeat to Jones. A quick return to action saw Desmae pick up a highlight reel KO over former Cage Warriors title contender, Alexander Jacobsen (9-5 MMA).
Putting more shine on Jones, who maintained Desmae was a dangerous fight he prepared meticulously for. The lightweight said, “Desmae is underrated in a lot of ways. I think I gave him as much respect as he deserved if not more”.
The success of last bout has filled the 24-year-old fighter with great confidence in his tactical work and he now believes effective game planning will allow him to pick up wins against anyone and everyone put in front of him.
Iron Sharpens Iron
By the time Jones steps in the cage at CW108, he will have been without a fight for six months. A lay-off that he has tried to avoid. “I was looking to fight on the London card. I called Graham [Boylan] and asked to fight on the Night of Champions card,” said Jones. “They said yes, I was offered an opponent, but he wasn’t too keen on fighting on that card.”
After a busy 2018, Jones is experiencing a quiet year with plenty of time on his hands. That time is being used wisely as he seeks to improve his skills by training with some of the best fighters in the world.
The Welsh prospect traveled to Sacramento, California to get rounds in at the world-renowned Team Alpha Male and had nothing but good things to say about his short time in the camp. “The main reason it’s such an attractive place for someone like me is the people who train there,” said Jones. “I had round after round with Andre Fili last time I was out there. Obviously, you’ve got Urijah Faber, guys who fight on Bellator, Chris Gonzalez who just made his debut, the guy is a wrestling prodigy, the rounds we get are unbelievable.”
With a massive night for the gym at UFC Sacramento seeing big wins for Urijah Faber, Josh Emmett, and Andre Fili, has reinforced the decision of Jones to make the trip stateside. He shared, “If I can test myself against those guys and deal with these guys, there’s no one in this division who’s going to bring anything for me.”
“My goal is to destroy the entire division”
Despite being next in line for a crack at the Cage Warriors 155lb title, Jones expects to be made to wait for his shot.
In the main event slot for the first time in his career, Jones is delighted to be the man tasked with carrying a big Cage Warriors event in his home country. “Its exciting times,” he said. “I don’t really get nervous. It just means I’m on a bit later and I get to talk on the mic. Last time they cut me off which was quite irritating.”
The organization recently crowned a new lightweight champion in Jai Herbert (9-1 MMA), who picked up a big third round TKO victory over top contender Jack Grant. Despite a standout performance, Mason Jones remains unconvinced by the new champion at 155. “I watched the Jai [Herbert] and Jack [Grant] fight and I wasn’t impressed.”
A glamour division for Cage Warriors, lightweight is home to the likes of Mason Jones, Jai Herbert, Paddy Pimblett and Soren Bak. Despite being surrounded by big names, Jones doesn’t believe any man can threaten his undefeated record.
“I don’t see anyone in this division who’s a threat to me. I think I’m above the level”.
Even the champion is thought to be easy work for the 24-year-old Welsh standout. “Jai is dangerous, he’s got power in his hands, but I think I’ll be able to read him, and he won’t be able to adapt to fighting someone like me.”
Although he may have to wait, Jones assures when his chance does come, he’ll take it with both hands, capturing the title and defending against all comers as he aims to wipe out the entire division, outlining his vision. Jones shared his goal, “is to destroy the entire division. When I say that I don’t mean it as a joke, I’m serious. I’ll fight everyone in this division one by one until I move onto the UFC.”
“It’s not my idea get hold of a belt and keep hold of it until UFC call,” said Jones. “My idea is to get the belt and keep defending it and when the UFC call I’ll be ready”. Now the headline act can look forward to the next phase of his career which begins with Cage Warriors 108 in October at Cardiff’s Viola Stadium.
An undeniable talent, Jones seems destined for great things in the sport. The Cage Warriors lightweight title is almost certainly in his future and you can be sure he wont stop there.
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The Scrap’s Jordan Ellis of Liverpool, UK is a lifelong fight fan and aspiring writer. Covering all things MMA and Boxing, you can follow him on Twitter (@JordanEllisUK) for daily fight news and content.