Dana White did the unthinkable this week and cancelled UFC 151. The main event pitted light heavyweight champion Jon Jones against Dan Henderson. However, after Henderson partially tore his MCL and had to pull out, White sought out a replacement for the fight in Chael Sonnen.
The problem is that champion Jones refused to accept the fight.
"Chael Sonnen accepted the fight with Jon Jones, so as of 8 o'clock last night we had a fight," White said on August 23. "But the one thing I thought wouldn't happen, happened. Jon Jones said, 'I'm not fighting Chael Sonnen with eight days' notice."
Jones claims he didn't want the fight because he beat Sonnen last year at UFC 140 by submission in the second round. He cited the low pay-per-view numbers for the fight and said no one wants to see that fight. As a result, White had to cancel UFC 151, a move he calls "one of my all-time lows" as president of UFC.
This makes it sound like Jones cares about the buy-rates of the pay-per-view, but he also called the fight high risk-low reward, which makes it sound like he is scared to fight Sonnen again. Maybe Jones figures that with only eight days to prepare for someone he already beat, he isn't good enough to pull out another win. Plus, isn't a low buy-rate better than no buys at all?
This affected a number of undercard fighters who were looking forward to the payday from fighting on the card. Charlie Brenneman went to Twitter and mentioned that he trained for two months and now won't get paid for his fight. Danny Castillo also went to Twitter to mention that Sallie Mae doesn't care if UFC cancelled the event because they still expect their payment.
Jon Jones refused to fight, causing Dana White to cancel the event, which hurts a lot of people. Will Jones ever recover from this action, or will this mark the end of his UFC career when he eventually drops the title?
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