The interim light heavyweight champion has been suspended, retroactive to July 6
Jon Jones was suspended by the United States Anti-Doping Agency on Monday. Jones tested positive for a banned substance the week of UFC 200 and had to be removed from his main event bout with Daniel Cormier.
It was the maximum penalty USADA could enforce for the positive test. The earliest Jones can return to action will be July 2017 as the suspension is retroactive to July 6.
“On the evidence before the Panel, the Applicant is not a drug cheat,” the arbitrators wrote in their epilogue, via MMAFighting.com. “He did not know that the tablet he took contained prohibited substances or that those substances had the capacity to enhance sporting performance.
“However he has not only lost a year of his career but an estimated $9 million. This outcome which he admits to be a wake up call for him should serve as a warning to all others who participate in the same sport.”
The decision to pull Jones cost Cormier $10 million, so it’s not far-fetched to think that this cost Jones at least $9 million.
UFC released the following statement on the matter.
“UFC is aware of the one-year sanction levied against Jon Jones as a result of his UFC Anti-Doping Policy violation, decided by a three-person arbitration panel held on Monday, Oct. 31, 2016. UFC has been advised that the one-year suspension commenced on Wednesday, July 6, 2016. While the decision indicates no evidence of Jones’ intentional use of banned substances, it does highlight the care and diligence that is required by athletes competing in the UFC to ensure that no prohibited substances enter their system.”
Jones is still facing a suspension from the Nevada State Athletic Commission, but this decision will still keep him out of action until at least the middle of 2017.
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