In the words of Nate Diaz: “I’m not surprised.”
Jon Jones has screwed the pooch once again. After defeating Daniel Cormier in a triumphant UFC return, reclaiming the light-heavyweight title and the UFC’s top pound-for-pound rank, “Bones” looked ready to put his checkered past behind him. But in typical Jon Jones fashion, the man who many consider the GOAT (“greatest of all time”) is again in turmoil after testing positive for Turinabol — an anabolic steroid.
When it comes to failed drug tests, this isn’t Jones’ first rodeo. He tested positive to estrogen blockers just a few days prior to UFC 200 (which he blamed on a tainted “sex pill”), and before that he tested positive for a cocaine metabolite. And then there are the countless other mishaps “Bones” has had outside of the octagon.
Is this the final straw for Jon “Bones” Jones? On the one hand, he’s been given so many second chances and squandered every one of them. But on the other hand, he’s possibly the greatest mixed martial artist ever and one of the few big-name draws in the UFC.
The Future of Jon Jones
Odds Jones’ B-sample confirms the positive result: 1/19 (95%)
There’s still a slight chance that Jon Jones is clean. The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) is still awaiting the B-test, which could vindicate the light-heavyweight champ if it comes out negative.
The chances of that are extremely slim, though. It’s rare for the B-test to contradict the initial result, and Jones has a history of doping that makes us think the result will be confirmed.
Odds Jones denies knowingly using performance enhancing drugs: 1/1 (50%)
When Jones tested positive before his rematch against Daniel Cormier at UFC 200, he blamed it on tainted “sex pills” he took while partying. That was for estrogen blockers; anabolic steroids are a lot harder to account for.
When athletes set off alarms for increased testosterone levels or traces of obscure substances, it’s a lot easier to attribute the results to a mishap — perhaps by taking a new legal supplement or even eating a tainted steak.
Straight-up steroids, though? This is going to be a tough one to spin.
Over/Under duration of Jones’suspension: 3.5 years
Jon Jones faces a possible four-year suspension if the B-test confirms the initial result. Given that this is his second time testing positive for a performance enhancing drug (and his third failed drug test), there’s little reason for USADA to issue him a lenient punishment.
Odds Dana White announces that Jones will never fight in the UFC again: 2/1 (33%)
The UFC took a huge risk with Jon Jones — more than once. If we look at his list of controversies — a DUI, testing positive for cocaine, drag racing, a hit-and-run, and a history of PEDs — it makes sense for Dana White to cut Jones loose. (Or at least say he’s cutting Jones loose, and then welcome him back post-suspension to reap the benefits of a big-name redemption story.)
With Ronda Rousey out of the picture and Conor McGregor potentially continuing to box after the Mayweather fight, the UFC doesn’t have anyone else to carry the UFC. When Jones gets back from his likely suspension, there could be a gaggle of new stars in town that make a 34-year-old Jones less appealing. by the time he returns from suspension, so this could potentially end his career.
Odds Jon Jones announces his retirement in 2017: 3/1 (25%)
This is a tough one. After a four-year suspension, Jones will be 34 and past his prime. Now could be the time to retire from fighting and start a new chapter. But it seems “Bones” still has something to prove, and I have a feeling that he hasn’t given up on himself yet — even if others have.