On Wednesday, the California State Athletic Commission, the sanctioning body of UFC 214, overturned Jon Jones’ victory over Daniel Cormier to a no contest.
The verdict comes less than 24 hours after the USADA announced Jones’ B-sample also contained the anabolic steroid Turinabol. The troubled UFC light heavyweight champion’s A-sample, which was submitted after the UFC 214 weigh-ins on July 28, was flagged for a potential anti-doping violation last month.
While Jones will be afforded due process, where it is believed he will once again finger a tainted supplement for his flunked drug exam, is facing a tough uphill battle – particularly given his checkered past.
It seems like only a matter of time until Jones is once again stripped of his UFC title. The UFC has yet to address the status of Jones’ belt, but UFC president Dana White previously said that it will go back to Cormier if Jones comes up dirty.
It will be third time’s the unfortunate charm on multiple fronts if that’s the case for Jones. It will be the third time he’s been stripped of the UFC gold and the third time he’s flunked a drug test.
In 2005, Jones tested positive for benzoylecgonine, the main metabolite in cocaine, in a random screening. Because the drug test was administered during an out-of-competition period, Jones was not suspended and merely fined $25,000 for “violating the [UFC’s] Athlete Code of Conduct policy.”
Jones was originally stripped his his gold in 2015 after a felony hit-and-run arrest where a pregnant motorist suffered a broken arm.
The troubled 30-year-old returned to capture the vacant interim strap by beating Ovince Saint Preux one year later. He and Cormier, who had claimed Jones’ stripped belt during his absence, were slated to headline UFC 200 in a title unification bout until Jon Jones pulled another Jon Jones.
Jones was yanked from UFC 200 just days before showtime after hydroxyclomiphene and Letrozale, banned anti-estrogen substances, were discovered in his urinalysis. Jones tearfully denied any wrongdoing and blamed a tainted “dick pill” that his teammate gave him to improve his sex life.
He was subsequently stripped of his interim belt.
The USADA can suspend first-time offenders up to two years for steroid use. The ban can be as high as four years for multiple offenses, which is what Jones is staring dead in the eyes.
White had said Jones’ illustrious/tainted/questionable MMA career could be over if he’s levied a multi-year ban.