Ryan spent some time training with Jones (27-1 MMA, 21-1 UFC) ahead of his scheduled first title defense against Stipe Miocic last month, which ended up getting canceled after Jones tore his pectoral muscle before UFC 295.
Ryan, a jiu-jitsu black belt and multiple-time grappling world champion, said Jones reminds him of UFC Hall of Famer Georges St-Pierre.
“With Jon, he’s very similar to GSP, to Georges in the sense that he’s not the world’s best wrestler, he’s not the best jiu-jitsu guy, he’s not the best striker,” Ryan told MMA Junkie and other reporters after Sunday’s UFC Fight Pass Invitational event. “But his ability to put it all together is just on a different level, even just grappling.
“Like, his ability to intuitively change his game plan from the start of the roll to the end of the roll or from round to round is incredibly impressive. So the most impressive thing obviously is his ability to put everything together, but his ability to adapt as the match goes on and change the game plan per what you’re doing, and I was very, very impressed with him. Just as a person and as an athlete all around.”
Jones’ title fight with former champion Miocic is expected to be rebooked after he returns from injury. In the meantime, Tom Aspinall captured the interim heavyweight title when he knocked out Sergei Pavlovich at UFC 295.