UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones fails drug test, set for lengthy suspension

On Monday, Swedish outlet MMAnnyt published a report that its sources indicated a long-awaited rematch between UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon “Bones” Jones and Alexander Gustafsson would presumably headline UFC 218, which will emanate from the new Little Caesars Arena on Dec. 2.

You can now scratch that off, along with a Brock Lesnar super-fight, or any fight, really.

TMZ first reported Tuesday evening that Jones failed a test in relation to his UFC 214 win over Daniel Cormier, and his light heavyweight title will likely soon be returned to the former champion despite scoring a third-round stoppage on July 29. 

Jones, who turned 30 just 10 days prior to the fight, previously was banned one year by USADA after testing positive for the banned substances clomiphene and letrozol, and this time reportedly came up positive for the anabolic steroid turinabol. 

Per USADA policy, Jones upcoming suspension, if upheld, could range anywhere from the minimum of two years, and as long as four.

The UFC released the following statement later in the evening:

The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Jon Jones of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an in-competition sample collected following his weigh-in on July 28, 2017. 

USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case involving Jones, as it relates to the UFC Anti-Doping Policy and future UFC participation. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full and fair legal process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) also retains jurisdiction over this matter as the sample collection was performed the day before Jones’ bout at UFC 214 in Anaheim, CA, and USADA will work to ensure that the CSAC has the necessary information to determine its proper judgment of Jones’ potential anti-doping violation.

Additional information will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward.

“I did a lot of the right things to get back in this position,” Jones told Joe Rogan in his post-fight interview at UFC 214. 

UPDATE: As of tonight, the UFC has still not stripped Jones of his light heavyweight strap. 

Stay tuned for more updates regarding Jones, Cormier and UFC 218 in Detroit.