It takes no balls whatsoever for Chael to take the fight on short notice because he has nothing to lose. He is coming up a weight class (although he has fought there before) and off a loss. He has done nothing to earn a shot and if he loses it would be easily dismissed since it was short notice, coming up a weight class, etc..
Jones is the one who would have everything to lose and almost nothing to gain from the fight. Thank god he turned it down. Dana is such an utter asshole, trying to turn this sport into a clown show. Making utterly retarded, nonsensical fights and then trying to blame Jackson or Jones when they rightfully laugh in his face for such idiocy.
Whilst I agree with every thing you say here and I'm too, glad that Jones rejected Sonnen, I can't help but feel that Greg Jacksons response would have been the same regardless of who the new opponent was.
Let's just say theoretically that Dana offered Jones Gustaffsson, I believe Jacksons response would have been exactly the same; "taking this fight on short notice will be the biggest mistake of your career".