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Here we go again.
Jon Jones has been notified of a potential violation by the United States Anti-Doping Agency for a banned substance in relation to his UFC 214 rematch with Daniel Cormier, which he won by third round knockout.
And, once again, Jones’ team is going to fight this and feign innocence.
Enough is enough. Jones has run out of “get out of jail free” cards and the Ultimate Fighting Championship has every right to turn their back on him.
Consider this: The UFC is at its most vulnerable right at this point and time. WME-IMG’s $4 billion purchase of the mixed martial arts promotion hasn’t gone quite the way that they planned. Ronda Rousey was obliterated by Amanda Nunes and it appears her mixed martial arts career is over. Conor McGregor hasn’t touched the Octagon since the purchase was made and is preparing to make the biggest payday of his life in another sport. Their top pound-for-pound fighter during all the turmoil, Demetrious Johnson, refused to take on T.J. Dillashaw and was trashed in the media by Dana White, who certainly doesn’t mind publicly trashing his champions as he did with his welterweight champion Tyron Woodley. It’s taken Georges St. Pierre a year to make up his mind and, even then, nobody is really sure about his star power as he enters a middleweight title fight against a champion who hasn’t defended the crown against anybody in the top 10. Nunes bailed on what is usually the biggest card of the summer at the 23rd hour and injuries took out the most heated rivalry outside of Jones-Cormier when Cody Garbrandt had to pull out of his fight against Dillashaw.
It’s almost looking like WME-IMG bought a lemon, doesn’t it?
Well, at least they had Jones, right?
The man who is arguably the greatest mixed martial artist in the history of the sport carried the UFC to its best pay-per-view showing when he faced Cormier at UFC 214. It appeared that Jones had finally got ahold of his turbulent past and was ready to carry the promotion on his back through the turmoil. And the UFC was willing to push all their chips into the middle of the table and put together super fights to cash in on Jones’ ability and redemption story. A possible mega fight with Brock Lesnar or a heavyweight title bout with Stipe Miocic were both evidence of the UFC’s faith that Jones had turned a corner in his life.
But those corners he turned only meant that he circled the block and is right back where he was last year when he was pulled from UFC 200 because of “dick pills.”
Nothing has changed. And the scariest thing is that he actually believes what comes out of his mouth but finds a way to Mr. Hyde his way through these personality issues.
Just like last time, his team is defending him amidst the failed test. But they are doubling down now by suggesting that Jones was “set up.” But the reality is that Jones simply cannot be trusted “Then. Now. Forever” (c) WWE.
Although Dana White usually functions on emotion first, he was right when he suggested that Jones shouldn’t headline another PPV after the UFC 200 situation. But he was painted into a corner with the Cormier fight considering that the UFC had struggled to put up numbers and Jones-Cormier was, by far, the hottest ticket in town. But Jones hasn’t redeemed himself. Despite his newfound demeanor after knocking out Cormier, Jones isn’t a guy who has found his way. He’s a sociopath who has manipulated everyone into thinking that he can be fixed.
He can’t. And especially not when he’s under the spotlight. With the belief that the UFC will always have the door open for him, Jones refuses to do right.
Remember, this is the guy who refused to fight a very beatable Chael Sonnen on short notice and was instrumental in the UFC’s first cancelled PPV. He’s not a team player. He’s a Team Jones player who has only looked out for his best interests. It wouldn’t be so bad if his best interests were something other than drugs and controversy.
The mere fact that he was flagged suggests that Jones has learned nothing. Someone in his position that has a microcosm of humility would do everything in their power to ensure that they were taking clean supplements or, here’s a thought, no supplements at all. As good as he is, why risk it?
To punctuate the significance, this all comes out during the week of the biggest event in the history of combat sports. For it to be dominating headlines the same week that a record breaking event is set to take place only slams the nail through the casket.
He’s 30-years-old and could potentially face a four year ban from the sport that he’s taken to as a natural. While people work hard to attain a microcosm of his success inside of the cage, Jones pisses it away at every turn. Other fighters have ruined their fighting ability with the things that Jones has done outside of the cage. But it seemingly hasn’t affected Jones as a fighter, just as a person. And that person needs to be sent home, forever.
Nobody will ever beat Jones inside of the cage, except himself. And that’s the worst enemy of them all. The UFC must realize this and refuse to enable the future ESPN “30 for 30” story. You cannot allow him to waltz back into the title picture like you did with this last suspension. He won’t learn. To be honest, he can’t learn. It’s impossible for a man with his mentality to be able to differentiate right and wrong because the lines are blurred in his own mind.
It’s safe to say that Jones is the biggest disappointment in sports history. Unlike others, he didn’t ruin his career inside of the cage when he was active because nothing he did actually affected his fighting ability. Jones ruined his career when he wasn’t actively fighting because he’s a troubled man who truly believes that rules don’t apply to him.
And the UFC needs to realize that and sever ties with him. If not for their own sanity, maybe for Jon Jones.