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Despite lack of testing, Jon Jones says he never left USADA program

After 9 tests in 2017, Jones has only been tested once in 2018. But according to the former champ, there’s nothing suspicious going on.

jon jones ufc 165

Jon Jones’ MMA career remains in a holding pattern as he continues to work on a resolution to a failed USADA drug test in 2017 following his fight with Daniel Cormier. That battle ended with Cormier brutally knocked out, but the result is now listed as a No Contest. But the bigger battle is in trying the ensure any suspension levied by USADA is closer to two years than five.

Jones has stayed pretty mum on that topic, letting his manager field interviews on that topic. That’s probably for the best given the last time he opened his mouth and spoke on the subject. But he recently took to Twitter to clarify another point regarding USADA: whether he was still in the testing pool.

Jon’s continued participation in the USADA drug testing program had been put into doubt last week when fans queried the USADA testing database and noticed Jones hadn’t been tested at all in 2018. Soon after, a single test appeared in Q3 of 2018 for Jones, but people still wondered if he had pulled a Lesnar and removed himself from the pool.

USADA rules specify that anyone removing themselves from the program has to spend six months being tested before returning to the cage. Brock Lesnar was infamously given a waiver to avoid this period the last time he returned for UFC 200, only to test positive for clomiphene (this ended the exception system all together). He then pulled out of the testing regime all together with six months remaining on his drug suspension, freezing it. Now that he’s returned to the pool in anticipation of a fight with Daniel Cormier in 2019, he’s serving both six month periods concurrently.

Smart, but also a bit sketchy. So it’s nice to hear that Jon Jones hasn’t done something similar. Whether it’ll help him convince USADA (or an arbitrator) that he deserves a shorter sentence is unclear.

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