Jon Jones has warned the UFC's heavyweights that his "bigger ass" and "thicker legs" will make a more dangerous fighter.
The MMA legend has vacated the UFC light-heavyweight title and is bulking up in preparation for a move to the heavyweight division in 2021.
Jones admits that fighting naturally bigger men above 205lb will be "intimidating as s**t" - but says his own body transformation up to 240lb will help his fighting style.
"When I was 205, I always had a hard time getting down low," the 33-year-old told ESPN. "Or hated getting low, with [single-leg takedowns] and stuff like that. Almost as if my knees were killing me to do it.
"Now that I've been working on my legs so much and they've gotten thicker... I think it'll make those muscles a lot faster.
"I predict that my shooting ability and my wrestling is going to just be faster. There's just more power, and my ass has gotten a lot bigger.
"I think my double-legs are going to be one of the biggest differences in my game that people are going to notice."
Plenty of us certainly notice an ass and general lower-body expansion throughout December. But in Jones's case it's clearly a deliberate strategy to pack on muscle.
While standing, striking and fighting at range were his strengths at light-heavyweight, the versatile 'Bones' can do it all - and appreciates he may have to engage in more wrestling at heavyweight. Either because larger foes look to wear him down or as a tactic himself to avoid incoming power shots.
Jones also told ESPN that he's discovered new motivation after finding it hard to get himself in the zone for recent contests.
"The light-heavyweight division was fun, but I just wasn't scared of those guys anymore," he said. "Like, none of them. And I think it showed in some of my performances. Obviously, I still trained hard. But there was no urgency in some of my last fights.
"With these next guys I'm going to be going up against, I respect these guys. These guys are intimidating - they're intimidating as s**t. It just gets me up in a whole different way."
There's no set time or opponent for Jones's heavyweight debut. UFC champ Stipe Miocic is expected to defend his title against Francis Ngannou next, possibly in March 2021.
The big question is whether Jones goes right in against the winner of that contest or takes on a different heavyweight opponent first to test himself in his new division. He admits he isn't 100% certain when it comes to his approach yet.
"I go back and forth," said Jones. "Sometimes I think I should take like a top-10 guy [at heavyweight] and just get my feet wet, figure out what's happening. And then the other times, I think: 'F**k it. Let's just go big or go home.'
"I'm trying to get these big-money fights these days. I like taking care of everybody around me."
Featured image credit: Instagram/@jonnybones
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