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UFC champion Jon Jones opts against surgery on thumb

News further escalates the feud between Jones and Rashad Evans

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Justin M. Bowen

Jon Jones enters the arena to face Ryan Bader for their light heavyweight bout at UFC 126 Saturday, February 5, 2011 at Mandalay Bay Events Center. Jones won by submission.

Rashad Evans

Rashad Evans talks with reporters about his issues with Jon Jones, his upcoming fight with Phil Davis and more while in Las Vegas for the UFC Fighter's Summit.

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones’ injured thumb will not require surgery after all.

Jones’ manager announced via his twitter account Friday afternoon that a previously announced surgery would not take place after a Las Vegas doctor advised against it this week.

“After he looked at (Jones), he thought surgery was a bit evasive,” Jones’ manager Malki Kawa wrote, “and (Jones) didn’t have to have if he didn’t want to.”

Predictably, the news set previously announced opponent and former teammate Rashad Evans into a fit of anger. Evans took a fight against Phil Davis at UFC 133 August 6 in Philadelphia when Jones originally announced he would take time off to recover from the injury.

Evans has spoke negatively about Jones for months and didn’t back off from any of those comments earlier this week.

“There were a lot of things that made me mad about the whole situation,” Evans said. “I definitely wanted to address a few things. I was getting into it.”

When he heard Jones didn’t require surgery Friday, Evans gave his thoughts over twitter and repeatedly called the injury “fake."

The attacks prompted a response from Jones.

“Rashad go ahead and try to play me now, never have I seen a man so jealous and self centered. I almost feel bad for you,” Jones wrote. “Truly looking forward to getting back with the coaches so that we can begin preparing for you.”

With Jones (13-1) healthy, the bout with Evans (15-1-1) could take place before the end of the year. But Davis (9-0) could derail those plans if he continues his upward ascent and defeats Evans this summer.

“It’s not a cakewalk,” Evans said. “Phil is a tough fighter. I’m up for the challenge.”

Case Keefer can be reached at 948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at twitter.com/casekeefer.

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