Morning Report: Gordon Ryan details training with Jon Jones, explains how he’s ‘a lot like GSP’

Jon Jones has put out the Bat-Signal ahead of his first UFC heavyweight title defense.

The MMA community was recently caught off guard by the sight of Jones working with his fellow combat sports legend Gordon Ryan. Ryan is considered by most in the jiu-jitsu world as the greatest no-gi grappler on the planet, and arguably the greatest ever. Therefore, pairing up together with the arguably best MMA fighter ever makes for some scary potential.

Ryan revealed when speaking with Morning Kombat that Jones reached out to him through Instagram, setting up their pairing. While he doesn’t necessarily consider himself a “coach,” Ryan admits to teaching Jones in the jiu-jitsu realm. Mostly, Jones has been creative with the process and picks and chooses with a general idea and direction of what he wants to do in training. For Jones, the collaboration comes ahead of his dream matchup with Stipe Miocic at UFC 295 in Madison Square Garden next month.

“Stipe, there’s nothing really special that he does as an MMA grappler,” Ryan said, “He’s not bad but it’s not like he has an amazing ability to hip heist up or an amazing triangle or armbar or gets mounted on you, you’re never gonna get up. He’s kind of like a good, generic, all-around guy. So, I think that — obviously, Jon studies a lot of tape on him as well — at this point, Jon is just interested in doing things that he wants to improve upon as an athlete himself.

“If there was one thing I saw that Stipe did that was dangerous to Jon, or that I think could give Jon problems, then I would force Jon to be in those positions. But Stipe’s not known as a super dangerous grappler so I think it’s just overall Jon is just trying to improve as an athlete.”

Miocic will be only Jones’ second opponent since February 2020. For Miocic, Jones will be his first since losing his title to Francis Ngannou in March 2021.

Jones has dabbled very briefly in grappling competitions, most notably taking on Dan Henderson in a 2016 Submission Underground match. That same year, he competed twice in NAGA Phoenix, winning both of his matches with guillotines.

Ryan is no stranger to having worked with and beaten some of the very best in the world, resulting in him becoming “The King.” Jones, unsurprisingly, has been a standout individual to work with as Ryan highlighted “Bones” ability to quickly change gameplans and pace on the fly when something’s not working as ultra impressive. In regards to techniques, by the end of the week, Jones will have found ways to integrate them into how he can use them in MMA, says Ryan.

“Jon is a lot like ‘GSP,’” Ryan said. “He’s not the best wrestler in the world, he’s not the best striker in the world, he’s not the best at jiu-jitsu in the world but when it’s time to put things all together — just like Georges — he does it better than anybody else in the world. So, if you get a high-level wrestler, he’s gonna lose a wrestling match [and so on]. But when it’s time to actually fight, he’s better than anybody else in the world.

“The two things that impressed me to a very shocking degree with him was No. 1, his ability to learn moves. Because most guys at his level who are successful, and most guys who are in their mid-30s and they already have an established game over two decades, they have their game then once you teach them something they don’t really retain. It’s like they have their game and that’s it. With Jon, he’s always looking to integrate new things into his game and if he has five different topics he asks me about and I teach him five things, he might disregard three of them but if he likes two of them, he will immediately be like, ‘Okay. That’s a part of my game now.’”

Scare. Paulo Costa clears up injury concerns, vows to beat Khamzat Chimaev despite recent surgery

Goal. Bobby Green planning to make $1 million in 2023, calls for December matchup with Dan Hooker

Inflation. Bellator 300 fight night weights: Four fighters gain more than 20 pounds

Rivals. Cris Cyborg explains verbal altercation with Cat Zingano after Bellator 300

Time Off. Bellator 300 medical suspensions: Seven fighters potentially out 180 days

Shake-Up. Dana White explains last-minute Philipe Lins vs. Ion Cutelaba cancellation at UFC Vegas 80

The MMA Hour.

UFC Vegas 81 promo.

Free fight.

Bellator 300 recap.

Rapid Rounds: Tracy vs. Leonardo.

On To the Next One. MMA Fighting’s Mike Heck and Alex K. Lee discuss matches to make after UFC Vegas 80.

All in the legs.




Flag season.

Nate things.

Virtually identical.


Michel Pereira (28-11) vs. Andre Petroski (10-1); UFC Vegas 81, Oct. 14

Terrance McKinney (14-6) vs. Brendon Marotte (8-1); UFC Vegas 81, Oct. 14

Ikram Aliskerov (14-1) vs. Warlley Alves (14-6); UFC 294, Oct. 21

Caio Borralho (14-1) vs. Abus Magomedov (25-5-1); UFC Sao Paulo, Nov. 4

Jailton Almeida (19-2) vs. Derrick Lewis (27-11); UFC Sao Paulo, Nov. 4

Derek Brunson (23-9) vs. Ray Cooper III (25-8-1); 2023 PFL Championship, Nov. 24

Wellington Turman (18-7) vs. Jared Gooden (22-9); UFC Austin, Dec. 2

Steve Garcia Jr. (14-5) vs. Melquizael Costa (20-6); UFC Austin, Dec. 2

Randy Brown (17-5) vs. Muslim Salikhov (19-4); UFC 296, Dec. 16

Preston Parsons (10-4) vs. Bassil Hafez (8-4-1); UFC Vegas 83, Jan. 13

Ricky Simón (20-4) vs. Mario Bautista (13-2); UFC Vegas 83, Jan. 13

Brad Katona (13-2) vs. Garrett Armfield (9-3); UFC 297, Jan. 20

I won’t mind seeing Jones in some grappling matches in life after MMA. Here’s to hoping.

Thanks for reading!

Last Week’s Results:

Friday: 89% of 367 total votes answered “Usman Nurmagomedov” when asked, “Who wins tomorrow?” Nurmagomedov defeated Brent Primus via unanimous decision in the Bellator 300 main event.

79% of 301 total votes answered “Cris Cyborg” when asked, “Who wins tomorrow?” Cyborg defeated Cat Zinago via first-round TKO (punches) in the co-main event of Bellator 300.

56% of 267 total votes answered “Liz Carmouche” when asked, “Who wins tomorrow?” Carmouche defeated Ilima-Lei Macfarlane via fifth-round TKO at Bellator 300.

61% of 295 total votes answered “Grant Dawson” when asked, “Who wins tomorrow?” Bobby Green defeated Dawson via first-round TKO in the UFC Vegas 80 main event.

Thursday: 56% of 441 total votes answered “Yes” when asked, “Is Colby Covington vs. Islam Makhachev the fight to make if they each win their next fights?

Wednesday: 79% of 571 total votes answered “No” when asked, “Will Tyson Fury lining up Oleksandr Usyk be problematic going into his Francis Ngannou match?

Tuesday: 52% of 530 total votes answered “No” when asked, “Should Islam Makhachev vs. Charles Oliveira 2 been booked for somewhere other than Abu Dhabi?

Monday: 44% of 508 total votes answered “No” when asked, “Are ONE Championship events more entertaining than UFC events?

Today’s exit poll:


Who wins this week?

  • 74%
    Edson Barboza

    (40 votes)

  • 25%
    Sodiq Yusuff

    (14 votes)

54 votes total

Vote Now

If you find something you’d like to see in the Morning Report, hit up @DrakeRiggs_ on Twitter and let him know about it. Also, follow MMAFighting on Instagram and like us on Facebook.

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