Hard work, ridiculous skill set and no doubt some phenomenal genetics aside, Jon Jones -- the reigning and defending UFC light heavyweight champion -- believes he and his brother were just born to be great.
"Every guy I've ever been against is -- in a title fight is -- believes that he has the best training camp of his life," Jon said Monday during a UFC conference call. "That's what I'm used to. So yes, this is 100 percent what I do. I have been doing it for a long time and I respect Dominick [Reyes] very much and his team very much. But yes, none of this is new to me.
"The nerves -- all this stuff is exactly what I live for. I believe that I was born to do it. I believe my little brother was born to be a great football player. My older brother was born to be a great football player. I believe that I was born to be one of God's soldiers in the martial arts cage."
Regarded by many as the greatest of all-time in the MMA world, the 32-year-old Jones (25-1, 19-1 in UFC) will defend his title on Saturday against Reyes (12-0, 6-0 in UFC) in the main event of UFC 247 in Houston. Should Jones prevail, it would be his UFC-record 14th title win and would tie Demetrious Johnson for most title defenses with 12.
It would come in the aftermath of what was likely his younger brother's finest season.
The 29-year-old Chandler led the NFL with eight forced fumbles and tallied a career-high 19 sacks for his fifth straight double-digit sack season.
Their older brother is seven-year NFL vet Arthur Jones, who was huge in Jon's developing his wrestling base.
"I've been going against heavyweights my whole life," Jon said. "My brother is one of the best heavyweights in New York state wrestling history and I would wrestle him every day in high school and I would get my ass kicked by my older brother my whole life. I used to train with Travis Browne, Andrei Arlovski, so many great heavyweights for years. So I'm very comfortable going against guys that are bigger and stronger than me."