Jones could return to UFC with Cormier title rematch


Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones could return to the octagon in July, provided he can prove he is clean and physically ready to fight.

UFC boss Dana White is targeting a July 29 fight between Jones and current 205-pound champion Daniel Cormier, who Jones beat by unanimous decision at UFC 182 - the last of his eight successful defences of his belt before personal problems kept him out of the organisation for over a year.

Jones, 29, is serving a year-long suspension for a failed drug test. His return would be a huge draw for MMA fans and a big pay-per-view opportunity for White.

"Cormier is available to fight on July 8, but that time frame doesn't work for Jon Jones," White told ESPN. "Cormier already told me he's willing to fight either Jones or [Jimi] Manuwa.

"If Jon Jones is ready to fight [by UFC 214] on July 29, we'll see the Jones versus Cormier rematch, finally."

Cormier beat Anthony Johnson for the light heavyweight title at UFC 187, after it was vacated by Jones, and successfully defended the belt for a second time against Johnson at UFC 210 this month.

Manuwa is another possibility to fight Cormier, and the pair have already traded barbs over social media. The British fighter has also sought a cross-combat bout with former world heavyweight boxing champion David Haye.