The host claimed that he was merely doing his job, when he cut Abdul short at the end of the first live show.
An emotional Abdul was attempting to respond to
her act The Brewer Boys, who apologised to the judge for not living up to her expectations.
"My producers were screaming, 'We're way over, we gotta move on, stop them,' " Jones told The Hollywood Reporter.
"It was always a task to showcase 17 acts in two-and-a-half hours. With 16, we were going over, so it was a herculean feat that the production team pulled it off."
Responding to online critics, who suggested that he should have made time for Abdul, the Welsh presenter added: "I don't want to stop these people arguing - it's thoroughly entertaining. But we're on limited time, so I had to stop her occasionally.
"I will never apologise for doing my job," he said. "Paula was cool, but she did look a little bit annoyed."
Abdul admitted backstage that Jones's actions were "a little awkward".
> The X Factor USA soars to 11.8m for first live show