SAD, disappointed, angry. Those were the first three emotions I experienced (in no particular order) when I found out that once again Jon Jones legacy as the greatest UFC fighter was in question because of another ‘off-field’ controversy. This time it wasn’t some cocaine or a run in with police that undid him though, instead, it was a positive drug test after his UFC 214 victory that ruined his reputation for good.
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HERE’S a quick timeline on Jon Jones’ issues outside the octagon.
December, 2014 – Drug test returns positive with traces of the primary metabolite of cocaine found.
January, 2015 – After news of his failed test surfaces Jones checks into a rehab facility for a day.
April, 2015 – Involved in a hit and run before fleeing the scene leaving marijuana in his vehicle and an injured pregnant woman at the scene.
June, 2016 – Days prior to UFC 200 Jones tests positive for two banned substances before he was scheduled to fight Cormier.
This week – Flagged by USADA for a potential anabolic steroid doping violation and is provisionally suspended as a result.
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THIS pattern of dumb behaviour should have warned us all that Jones was bound to f*ck up again. After being given numerous chances to turn his life around and make amends for his terrible life choices Jones continues to find a way to appear in the spotlight in a negative context. Initially many clung onto hope that a few misdemeanours weren’t part of a bigger issue and that Jones could get back on track and resume his reign as the greatest UFC fighter ever. Now we know that isn’t the case. His legacy inside the cage is second to none with his one L coming via DQ for illegal elbows. So ‘technically’ Jones hasn’t lost a fight in his UFC career. His most recent bout against Daniel Cormier supposedly squashed any doubt there was a rivalry between the two with Jones winning his 11th fight in 11 attempts with a championship belt on the line.
NOW that reports have emerged that he was potentially doping though what does this do for his reputation and legacy? Questions are starting to surface and while they might seem slightly outrageous they need to be asked amid the recent news. Is it the first time Jones has used anabolic steroids? Has he done this before and got away with it? How many of those 23 wins were ‘legit’? Jones now finds himself in a similar position to another doping user Lance Armstrong, with his entire body of work in question. While it is sad there is little sympathy for Jones though with all the good that was seemingly done on the 29th of July has now been undone. He has made his bed now he has to sleep in it.
THERE may be no coming back for Jones now with UFC president Dana White confirming it could spell doom for his career in the octagon. White is usually a man accustomed to dealing with issues in the fighting world was lost for words and somewhat sad, disappointed and angry himself. We all are. Jones’ triumphant return brought joy to thousands and thousands of MMA fans across the globe and now his self-destructive tendencies may have cost him his career. It’s tough to see him coming back from this which is sad, but then again we should have seen it coming.
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