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Calls mounting for UFC to strip Jon Jones of his title

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Kenny Florian and Kevin Iole are calling for the Light Heavyweight champ to be stripped of his title, pulled from his UFC 187 bout with Anthony "Rumble" Johnson and enter rehab.

While the UFC waits to come to a decision about how to handle Jon Jones' arrest on felony charges of fleeing the scene of an accident, calls are mounting from the MMA media for the promotion to pile on with more punishment for the wayward champ.

Former multi-time UFC title challenger and now UFC Tonight co-host Kenny Florian pulled no punches on Fox's America's Pregame show.

"It certainly doesn't look good," Florian said (transcribed by MMA Mania). "Obviously, you talk about the problem with his image right now and it's not good. This is a guy who is representing the whole organization. This is the best combat fighter in sports right now. This is the best fighter on the planet. It does not look good for him. He has so much talent but there is a lot of immaturity with that talent. I think cutting him from the UFC may be a bit harsh. I have a little bit of compassion. It seems like, if this is true, there is some kind of problem going on. He needs help and it needs to be legitimate help, not getting away for 24 hours. He needs to go out and get help.


"I think stripping him of the title is appropriate," Florian continued. "Of course, if these allegations are true. I think cutting him may be a little bit harsh. I would be for stripping him of the title and getting him to realize that there are repercussions. If you screw up, there are repercussions and a possible fine. He was supposed to face Anthony Johnson, and I think that is the other repercussion; I don't think he should -- if this is true -- I don't think he should be allowed to fight Anthony Johnson. He needs to go and get help. I think UFC is probably, more likely, looking to find a replacement for Jon Jones at this point. I think that is going to happen if these allegations are true."

Kevin Iole of Yahoo! agrees.

"It would be a symbolic gesture to strip him, but an important measure of symbolism," Iole wrote. "The UFC will be saying that it meant it when it instituted a Fighter Code of Conduct, and that it's not going to let Jones slide because he's a great fighter and a big moneymaker.

"The UFC can support Jones if they choose, and can offer legal or other assistance. A good employer stands behind its employees when they're in their greatest need, and providing aid or advice would be doing just that."

Jones is still set to face Anthony Johnson at UFC 187 on May 23 in Las Vegas, Nevada.