Jon Jones is not out of hot water yet, but he may be getting close.
Ahead of UFC 200, Jones failed a USADA-administered drug test for two banned substances, hydroxy-clomiphene and Letrozole, and was pulled from his rematch with Daniel Cormier.
Jones, who is currently under a temporary suspension, has been adamant since then that he did not knowingly take a banned substance.
According to Jones’ attorney, Howard Jacobs, the product that the positive test supposedly stemmed from was tested by both his team and USADA. The product was found to be contaminated with both banned substances that were found in Jones’ system.
“We’ve been able to establish the source of the prohibited substances,” Jacobs told The Luke Thomas Show on SiriusXM. “It came from a product that Jon took that was not labelled with either of these substances. We had it tested; the product was contaminated with both of them. I know USADA also independently had the product tested; their testing confirms what we found. We then sent essentially the same pills that we had had tested to be tested by USADA’s lab, which also found the same thing. Pretty much every time it’s been tested, it’s shown that the product is contaminated with both clomiphene and Letrozole.”
Jones’ arbitration hearing is scheduled for Oct. 31 in Los Angeles, where he and his team will appeal the failed drug test. Jones faces a maximum one-year suspension for taking "specified substances,” per the WADA code. At the minimum, he would be given a warning.
“It should definitely lead to a significant reduction — that’s our position,” Jacobs said. “The way the anti-doping rules, at least with the UFC program, are written, they mirror the World Anti-Doping Code to some extent — there are some differences. In a case like this, you can’t argue that you have no fault if you take a supplement or product that’s contaminated. But you can argue that you’re not significantly at fault, which gives you the ability to argue for a reduced sanction.”
Jones’ case is very similar to Yoel Romero’s and Tim Means’, who both appealed their respective cases and were not given the respective maximum sanction but instead a six-month suspension. However, Romero and Means did not appeal via arbitration. Both fighters settled with USADA beforehand.
Jones has a Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) disciplinary hearing scheduled for Nov. 10.
In August, Jones stated that he expected “to be back in the Octagon really soon.”