Jon Jones Manager Says He Is Not Ducking Rashad Evans
After a whirl wind week for Malki Kawa after rumors began to run wild that his star client, Jon Jones, was ducking his first challenger, Rashad Evans, Kawa went on damage control while talking to MMAJunkie.com this week about the fight, when and if it will happen, and the injury that prevented it from happening:
On Rumors That Jones Is Ducking Evans: "Jon_s not ducking Rashad. Jon is willing to fight Rashad. Jon wants to fight Rashad. Jon has no reason to duck him. The only reason he_s not able to fight on the timeline that Rashad wants is because his hand is not going to be ready. Surgery or no surgery, his hand is not 100 percent, and there_s nothing Jon can do about it."
On Jones_ Injury: "In the past, his hand would hurt for a few weeks, but the swelling and pain would eventually go away," Kawa said. "It_s completely different this time. It_s getting better now, two months after the fight, but he still doesn_t have his full strength. Jon never wanted to have surgery. He didn_t want to be forced out of the cage for an extended period of time. When Dr. Vahey gave him his opinion â€“ and this guy is the top dog in hand surgeries â€“ when he said he didn_t recommend surgery, it was music to Jon_s ears. Now he knows he can just rehab it."
On Jones vs. Evans Happening: "From the very get-go, we said we wanted to fight Rashad," Kawa said. "But that always meant fighting in August. We can_t do it in August. We always told the UFC it was going to be September or October before Jon would be ready. His hand was hurting, and he needed the time off. Even before he saw a single doctor, we told the UFC September or October would probably be best. The champ will be ready in September or October. That_s only a month or two after Rashad_s fight with Phil Davis. I can understand not wanting to wait in case something else happens with Jon_s hand and the fight has to be delayed more. Rahsad got bit in the ass doing that one time before. But don_t tell me that the champ doesn_t want to fight you. The champ wants to fight you. Jon hasn_t done anything to duck this fight. The only reason people think that is because Rashad said so. Jon_s not ducking anybody. If Rashad wants to do October and Dana White_s OK with it, let_s do it in October. We_re ready to rock and roll."