Four months after a positive drug test got Jon Jones pulled from his headlining bout with Daniel Cormier in UFC 200, Jones has officially been handed a one-year suspension in an arbitration proceeding before the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. The ban will keep him out of the octagon until next July.
The test in question came back positive for two banned substances, clomiphene and letrozole, both anti-estrogen agents. Jones contended that he ingested the substances after taking a drug to enhance sexual performance, and in no way intended to gain a competitive advantage from the offending substances.
The USADA arbitrators were persuaded by Jones’s explanation. However, they still saw fit to hand him the full one-year suspension for his failure to investigate the drug’s contents to check if there were any banned substances included. Here’s what the arbitral group had to say, from MMAFighting.com:
“On the evidence before the Panel, the Applicant is not a drug cheat,” the arbitrators wrote in their epilogue. “He did not know that the tablet he took contained prohibited substances or that those substances had the capacity to enhance sporting performance. However by his imprudent use of what he pungently referred to as a ‘dick pill’ he has not only lost a year of his career but an estimated nine million dollars. 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 ban retroactively applies to the date of the failed test, which in this case was July 7, 2016. Hence Jones should be allowed to compete again starting July of 2017, though he does also face discipline from the Nevada Athletic commission.