Whenever mixed martial arts (MMA) fans end up tuning into a live stream of an athletic commission hearing, we get a sobering look into just how ridiculous these government bodies can be. From the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) letting Chael Sonnen sucker them into kicking off the era of testosterone replacement therapy to the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) trying to throw a five-year suspension at Nick Diaz for weed, these aren’t exactly the most even-keeled organizations in the world.
CSAC’s hearing over Jon Jones’ failed drug test for Turinabol leading up to UFC 214 earlier this afternoon wasn’t a complete s**t show, but it certainly had its moments, both thanks to the commission and “Bones,” who probably did a better job of digging his own hole than anyone else present. You can watch the whole thing or read about the verdict here, but I thought it’d be fun to go through some of the wackiest moments from the 2.5-hour long event.
That Hearing Aid Guy
We all knew this was gonna be painful the moment a commissioner repeated several times that he’d left his hearing aid at home before launching into a slow and pointless rant about personal responsibility and being a positive role model ... all the while repeatedly bringing up ESPN “First Take” host Stephen A. Smith for some bizarre reason.
One of the commission, three hours in points out he didnt bring his hearing aid so cant actually hear the questions.#JonesCSAC— Dave/Dim (@dimspace) February 27, 2018
Yo. Why is Stephen A Smith's name keep coming up!?!?!?! What the hell!?!?! #JonesCSAC— Raphael Garcia (@RGarcia_Sports) February 27, 2018
Pipe down old man river! We don’t wanna hear any more about Stephen A Smith #JonesCSAC— Chris Hunt (@hunt5588) February 27, 2018
Yes, it really was that bad.
That Random Fan Guy At The End
So CSAC’s meeting was open to the public, which means the public was technically welcome to speak and give their thoughts on the matter before a verdict was agreed upon. But, that’s kind of like how ministers always include that “if anyone can think of why these two shouldn’t be married, speak now” part in the wedding ... yes, you’re allowed to speak, but no, you really shouldn’t unless you’ve got something important to add.
This guy “Giovanni, a big fan of mixed martial arts,” did not. After clarifying that nobody paid him to be there (suspicious), he went on to suggest Jones be simply fined and not have his license revoked — which to be fair is probably what most fans who don’t give a damn about steroids in MMA would be down for. Alas, we were two hours deep into a seemingly endless hearing and the Internet was not impressed with his performance.
We have a motion to go through with the fine and revocation. They'll vote now. But first, some comments from the public. Followed by second closing arguments. Then elevensies. Then a short break. Then high tea. Then the vote. #JonesCSAC— Scott Harris (@ScottHarrisMMA) February 27, 2018
That Damn Million Dollar Hit-And-Run Settlement
Jon Jones says the settlement he reached with the victim of his 2015 hit-and-run was "huge," with an emphasis on huge. #JonesCSAC— Shaheen Al-Shatti (@shaunalshatti) February 27, 2018
In another not so shining moment for Jones, he let his frustration bubble up after commissioners rehashed all the terrible things he did over the past five years. He didn’t exactly express it well, dropping the fact that he paid out a $1 million settlement to the pregnant woman he hit-and-ran back in 2015.
Uh, did he just let it slip that he paid that woman $1 million after saying he signed a NDR? #JonesCSAC— Amy Kaplan (@PhotoAmy33) February 27, 2018
“My situation is like, you hit somebody with your car -- paid damn near a million dollars in a lawsuit -- and it’s like I’m getting judged for all the stupid s**t I’ve done a long time ago,” Jones said. “In this scenario, if we’re to ignore all the dumb things that I’ve done in the past, it’s like ... it almost makes you feel like if you have a troubled past, you have no rights, whatever evidence you can or can’t come up with, you’re guilty.”
Well, we’d like to say if you had some evidence to prove you weren’t guilty, maybe people wouldn’t suspect you were guilty. Not like you were really found especially guilty by CSAC in the end, anyways.
I'm just gonna be super open & honest with you guys.— Stephie Haynes (@CrooklynMMA) February 27, 2018
This is probably the most damning and stupid part of the entire hearing, and it could cost Jones another year or more off from the sport. While grilling Jones, commissioner Martha Shen-Urquidez took issue with Jones’ claim that USADA arrived while he was suspended by UFC for his hit-and-run case so he missed all the initial meetings and education provided.
”As part of [USADA], you are required to complete online educational classes, right?” she asked.
”I guess so,” Jones replied. “I’m going to be honest with you, I never did that.”
”Seriously? Because in 2015 you certified that you did. In 2016 you certified that you did. So now you’re saying that you actually didn’t?”
”Correct,” Jones said. “I had my management do it for me. I’m just here to be super open and honest with you guys.”
Jones said his management forged his signature on the USADA tutorial forms. #JonesCSAC— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) February 27, 2018
Commissioner: “Did you take the USADA training courses?”— RJ Clifford (@RJcliffordMMA) February 27, 2018
Jones: “No. My management did it for me.”
Director: “Alright. Slow zoom out. Wait for Malki to squirm. There’s the shot. Great job, Ted.” pic.twitter.com/fXO9lQi4Vy
My lord, Jon Jones. Get your s**t together! You just repeatedly and explicitly admitted to having your management forge your signature on USADA documents and not taking their mandatory educational tutorials. That’s about as flagrant a violation of the most basic responsibilities USADA demands of fighters as you’re going to see from anyone not named Nick Diaz.
And this is a self inflicted wound right here. All Shen-Urquidez was doing was rubbing your face in the fact that you were better educated than you implied in your earlier testimony, but rather than take it you just admitted to something much worse. Something that will definitely come up at your USADA arbitration and make you look like the “reckless” knucklehead they already pegged you as during the previous “boner pill” arbitration.
That Enabling Manager
A few minutes after admitting that his management basically forged official USADA documents, commissioner Martha Shen-Urquidez asked if Jones had ever considered replacing them.
“I’ve considered many times,” Jones said with a laugh. “Just kidding.”
Hahaha!!!! Oh wait, CSAC isn’t kidding.