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Casey Jones Fights For More Than Himself

Casey Jones Hit The Switch And Earned The Biggest Win Of His Career At Fury FC 56.

If Casey Jones wins a UFC title in five years, it might possibly go down as the second biggest victory in his career.

Usually quick to take advantage of his name, Jones has a pretty distinct walkout persona. Mask, wooden bat and maybe even a Ninja Turtles walkout song. Second to “Casey Jones” by The Grateful Dead, it’s the most logical choice out there. Few things in the fight game are predictable, but Jones’ walkout is one of the few.

At Fury FC 56, Jones came out to LL Cool J’s “Mama Said Knock You Out,” and while the 1990 banger is a very appropriate song heading into a fight, nobody but Jones and his family knew just how appropriate.

“It was something I just had sent [his mom] a while back,” Jones said. “She always knew when I had a fight and was always asking when I had a fight coming up, so I had sent that to her weeks ago at some point and I stuck with it, especially considering what happened now. I remember thinking, ‘I’m definitely walking out to that now.’”

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Shortly before his most recent fight, Jones’ mother got a new job in Colorado. Always a fan of photography, wildlife and the outdoors, the whole family knew the move made sense.

“She liked taking pictures, she was always taking pictures at the fights and just kind of snapping photos of everything,” Jones said. “We kind of thought she’d like it up there with all the beautiful scenery. We were right, because as soon as she moved there she was sending up pictures of mule deer that were walking around in her yard because they’re so used to people.”

Jones’ mother was regularly watching his fights, talking about his fights and looking forward to his fights. It was completely common for the two to catch up regularly, and with her recent move to Colorado there would be more phone calls than ever before. Something they were both more than okay with.

“I had talked to her Monday,” Jones said. “She called me when I got done training and she was fine. She was letting me know about some deer she saw and then she was like, ‘All right, well, I’ve got orientation tomorrow.’ It was a short conversation and I was like, ‘We’ll call you tomorrow to check on you and see how it went.’”

Jones texted his mother on Tuesday only to hear nothing. He chalked it up to reception issues she had mentioned and moved on.

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After he hadn’t heard from her on Wednesday he decided to call. On the other end of that call would come the most devastating news of his life.

“Wednesday, when I got off work at three, I called her phone one more time and a guy picked up and I was confused,” Jones said through tears. “At first, he wouldn’t tell me anything and now I know it’s because he couldn’t. He told me he was a detective and that alarmed me right there. He told me, ‘I’ll call you back in ten minutes.’ I got a call about 30 minutes later and it was the coroner. As soon as the lady said who she was, my heart dropped. I lost it.”

In denial and unsure of what to do, Jones made the tear-filled drive to the gym. Driving, crying and trying to wrap his head around the worst possible reality, Jones made it to the gym. After all, in just over two weeks he had a fight to prepare for.

He couldn’t make sense of anything. The situation couldn’t possibly be real. He found himself going through the motions of the day because it was still too big of a bombshell to comprehend. The only thing that his brain did know for sure was that he absolutely had to find a way to fight at Fury FC 56.

“My first thought was, I’ve got to go train; I’ve got to go win for mom,” Jones said. “One of her highlights and something she always looked forward to was the next one. One of her favorite things to do was come to the fights. She was always real excited for it. She would take pictures and make special posters for me. She was really my biggest fan.”

Had anybody in the arena known what Jones was going through, the walkout that would likely send them running through a brick wall before may have had tears in their eyes.

The experience was different than any other Jones has had in the cage. It was a wrestling-heavy bout that consisted of a lot of people shouting instructions on both sides. No matter how loud Cowboys Dance Hall was that night, Jones had to lie to every person in the crowd asking if he heard their words of encouragement.

“One of the things was that at the fights I could always hear her screaming over everybody else,” Jones explained. “I could always pick her voice out from everybody else. That was one thing I noticed in this fight. I had people coming up, asking if I could hear them yelling. I was like, ‘oh yeah, I heard everything!’ but I didn’t hear anyone.”

The fight was looking iffy going into the third and final round and everybody knew it would take one hell of a performance to bring the win home.

Jones didn’t train through tears for two weeks, speak at a funeral six days before and persevere through depression to come up short by being out wrestled. He had given his whole focus to his opponent that night until stepping off the stool in the pivotal final round when his striking coach reminded him that he was fighting for more than just himself.

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“When he said that, I said, ‘let’s throw caution to the wind,’” Jones said. “I started throwing stuff, let’s catch him and hit him with everything we’ve got.”

Jones gutted it out, had a third round stronger than the first and came away with the win.

He may not have gotten the finish. He didn’t get a Bumpboxxx for the best KO of the Night and he didn’t come home with a title as a result, but he won the most important fight of the night and the most important fight of his career.

Every fight from here on out will be dedicated to his mother, and likely every fight before that was as well, but none of them will have such heavy emotions tied directly to it ever again.

Jones has no idea if he will continue to walk out to “Mama Said Knock You Out” or if that will stay captured and isolated to that one powerful fight, but it served one hell of a purpose, and for the sake of Casey Jones, the real grieving process can finally begin.

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