A look at Israel Adesanya and Jon Jones' bitter war of words

Israel Adesanya and Jon Jones have been at war for over a year, insulting family members, digging up criminal records and one calling the other a ‘f****** nerd’… all the digs that could lead to a bitter bout in 2021

  • Israel Adesanya and Jon Jones have been in a war of words for over a year now
  • The pair have frequently battled in many social media spats, including this week
  • Topics include insulting family members and teasing about criminal activity
  • This rivalry could lead to a potential heavyweight fight in the New Year 

Despite all of the famous faces and controversial characters in UFC history, no two fighters have created a bigger rivalry than Israel Adesanya and Jon Jones. 

The likes of Conor McGregor, Tito Ortiz, Daniel Cormier and Ronda Rousey have developed several spats over the years – yet ‘The Last Stylebender’ and ‘Bones’ have created a deep-founded hatred for one another that has dragged on for months and months.

The pair could end up fighting soon, with 2021 deemed to be the year when Adesanya and Jones finally match up after their war of words on Twitter and through the media. 

Jon Jones (above) is continuing his rivalry with UFC heavyweight rival Israel Adesanya

Adesanya (above) and Jones have been embroiled in a war of words on social media for months

Yet while the pair are separated from taking each other on in the Octagon, their online spats are sure to continue throughout the winter and into the new year. 

Sportsmail takes a look the history of the online jibes the pair have brought out over the past year-and-a-half…

October 2020 – Did Israel cross the line after racial row?

Their latest spat came as recently as this week, as the pair were embroiled in several hours of intense tweeting on Monday night.

After several opening rounds of tweets, Jones heavily criticised Adesanya’s portrayal of an African man by comparing to it to Conor McGregor’s rise in Ireland. 

The American tweeted: ‘McGregor came and made Ireland look like royalty. You came and made African men look soft. Get the f*** out of here.’ 

Jones made a controversial comment against Adesanya earlier this week on Monday

Adesanya didn’t take well to this remark and responded by telling Jones on Twitter that his mother would be disappointed in him – which was deemed controversial within its own right. 

Jones’ mother Camille died in 2017 after a long battle with diabetes and he responded by assuring Adesanya that she would be proud of him. 

Adesanya then made the row personal, bringing up Jones’ mother who died back in 2017

Jones replied by claiming his mother would be proud of his UFC achievements to date

September 2020- Jones ‘ripping arm’ threat 

Adesanya’s last fight came at the end of September when he beat Paulo Costa in the second round of their UFC 253 clash to continue his unbeaten streak in MMA.

Earlier this summer, Jones had himself rescinded his light-heavyweight to move up to the heavyweight category that the likes of Adesanya and Stipe Miocic currently compete in.

As his New Zealand rival crushed Costa in Abu Dhabi, Jones took to Instagram in an attempt to rile up Adesanya following his victory.

Jones (right) claimed he could ‘rip Adesanya’s arm off’ if the pair met in a potential 2021 fight

Jones claimed in a now-deleted Instagram post: ‘But what? You’ve stepped into the ring over 100 times now and you’re still not ready!? You have a youth advantage and like four times the fighting experience.

‘The truth is you’re already my p***y, you love being undefeated and you’ve seen what’s happened to everyone else. It raises your stock to mention my name, you’re aware of this.

‘You don’t want real confrontation with me, I’m not gonna just stand there and kickbox with you. I’ve been preparing for heavyweights, right around now I would literally tear one of your arms off.’

Adesanya couldn’t resist a small dig at Jones following his victory, though was mainly focused on the Costa success on the night in question. 

He simply said: ‘I just wanted to f*** up Jon Jones and I still will.’

Adesanya’s latest victory came against Paulo Costa in September this year in Abu Dhabi

April 2020 – Oxygen insult and arrest attack

As the build-up to the September clash between Adesanya and Costa continued, Jones decided to add to the tension as he reminded his rival of the last time the two fighters met.

In the 2017 Glory of Heroes 7 competition, the Nigerian-born New Zealand fighter was knocked out cold by Costa and required oxygen whilst receiving treatment. 

Jones took a screenshot of Adesanya receiving the extra air, and tweeted: ‘Wasting all that good oxygen. Someone wake this b**** up and change his tampon.’ 

The tweet, which ‘Bones’ later deleted, was made after Adesanya threw some abuse at Jones after the American was arrested due to drinking under the influence and for firing a gun in his Albuquerque home. 

Adesanya had earlier said: ‘He (Jones) is a young black man at the top of his game and he’s throwing it all away. 

Jones (above) was arrested for a drink driving incident in Albuquerque earlier this year

‘Like, I felt bad for him when I watched the body cam footage as well. At the end, when he was just sobbing, I felt bad for him. Because I can imagine myself in that position.

‘And I even bet you in the back of the squad car, he’s thinking, “F***, Israel’s gonna have a lot of material with this one.” I bet you. I swear to God. 

‘But at the same time I feel sad to see a young, black, skinny [expletive] who wishes he had the career at the beginning like I am right now, and he’s just throwing it all away.’

October 2019 – Nerd War 

A year ago this week, it was revealed that Adesanya was a major fan of the cartoon category known as anime, which Jones could not resist bringing up on social media.

The American then started a ‘nerd war’ with the tweet: ‘I’m not out here searching for dragon ball Z fans, I’m in pursuit of these history books. Being mentioned with history’s greatest combatants ever. F***ing nerd.’

‘Bones’ called Adesanya a ‘nerd’ after it was revealed the New Zealander likes anime

Jones’ actual reason for being angry at the New Zealand fighter was down to comments made by Adesanya in Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show earlier in the week. 

Adesanya had just beaten Robert Whittaker in UFC 243 and was responding to comments made by Jones about a potential fight.  

He said: ‘He’s trying to force my hand. I’m not stupid. It’s not about I’m not confident; trust me, I’ll f*** this m*********ing up when I fight him. 

Adesanya jokingly responded with a joke meme but still had harsh words for Jones 

‘I have to do what I have to do, I have to defend my belt. He is jealous. He sees the freshman that’s taking all the shine. 

‘It’s the new dog in the yard. He’s always been a fan (of me). He’s still a fan. I’ve known he’s a fan. Just wait your turn.’   

April 2019 – ‘Bones the Bully’

Once again, Jones opted to send several now-deleted tweets criticising Adesanya after his rival had spoken out against him in the media. 

After Adesanya had beaten Kelvin Gastelum in UFC 236’s heavyweight clash, Jones claimed that there was no need to ‘believe the hype’ surrounding his rival after he had beaten a ‘short stubby wrestler’. 

Adesanya had earlier described Jones as ‘a bully’ while also claiming his rival is still ‘a fan’ of his, which is why the rivalry between the pair came about.  

Adesanya has described American rival Jones (above) as a ‘bully’ in the past 

The Nigerian-New Zealand fighter said in April last year: ‘Jon Jones, he literally just reminds me of what I’ve hated most in life, and that’s bullies. I’ve had them through high school, coming up. Literally he’s a jock, he’s a c***. 

‘He knows I’m a threat. But guess what, I’ve said this for so long: If you want to beat me, do it yesterday. 

‘Every fight I get better. So if he wants to try to take me out early on when he knows I’m only a year in the UFC, and I’m still learning.’ 

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