With boos streaming down as the result of a trio of disputed scorecards inside Toyota Center, UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones added another honor to his legendary career. Jones (26-1, 1 NC) set a UFC record for victories in title bouts with his 14th by rallying to edge a determined Dominick Reyes on Saturday via unanimous decision in the main event of UFC 247 in Houston.
Reyes (12-1) set a hectic pace over the first three rounds and appeared to hurt Jones numerous times by outstriking him with body shots and hard left hands. But all three judges preferred Jones' gusty turnaround, helped by a handful of takedowns over the final two rounds to claim scores of 48-47, 48-47 and 49-46. CBS Sports scored the bout 48-47 for Reyes.
What do you make of UFC 247 and Jon Jones' future? Subscribe to our podcast State of Combat with Brian Campbell where we analyze everything that went down in Houston minutes after the event wrapped up at the Toyota Center.
"Dominick did a tremendous job. You have totally deserved my respect man," Jones said. "I think the difference in the fight was takedowns. I couldn't keep him down but at least I took him down. The exchanges were close with kickboxing but I believe my takedowns are what won it."
Fueled by a sense or urgency, Jones scored a pair of takedowns early in the fourth and fifth rounds as Reyes began to slightly fade. To Reyes' credit, however, Jones was unable to keep him down for more than a few seconds each time. The champion did, however, routinely back Reyes up in the final two rounds and visibly hurt him with a head kick.
"I had him one through three, man," Reyes said. "I was all over him. It is what it is. I'll get better. I proved that I'm the real deal."
It remains unclear what will be next for the champion given his flirtations with the heavyweight division and a desire to face champion Stipe Miocic. There's also the possibility of facing middleweight champion Israel Adesanya should the 185-pound champ beat Yoel Romero next month. The New Zealand native had his remarks after the main event with a simple smirk.
UFC president Dana White said after the fight that he scored it for Reyes but is seeing scores all over the place from a variety of media and fans alike.
"My kids are terrorizing me that the fix is in. 'How does this happen, Dad? Reyes won the fight!' None of us are judges. The judges call the fight and that's it," White told ESPN after the fight. "He's the G.O.A.T., all the things he's accomplished. Jon Jones isn't 25 years old anymore. He's taking on these young killers and he finds a way to win these fights. I just think the bar is set so high, you have such high expectations."
CBS Sports was with you all evening bringing you results and analysis as the UFC returns to Houston.
UFC 247 card and results
Jon Jones (c) def. Dominick Reyes via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 49-46)
via third-round TKO (punches)
Justin Tafa def. Juan Adams via first-round TKO (punches)
Dan Ige def. Mirsad Bektic via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Derrick Lewis def. Ilir Latifi via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Trevin Giles def. James Krause via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Lauren Murphy def. Andrea Lee via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 30-27)
Kalin Williams def. Alex Morono via first-round TKO (punches)
Mario Bautista def. Miles Johns via second-round TKO (punches)