Tuesday, July 5, 2022

VIDEO: Dana White Talks In-Depth About Jon Jones Drug Situation On “Americas Pregame”

UFC President Dana White appeared on “Americas Pregame” on FOX Sports 1 on Wednesday evening to talk in-depth about the recent story of Jon Jones testing positive for cocaine during an out-of-competition drug test administered to the UFC Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones on December 4th, just 30 days prior to his title defense against Daniel Cormier at UFC 182.

When asked if he ever considered cancelling the Jones-Cormier event due to Jones’ failed out-of-competition drug test, the UFC boss made it clear that the thought never even crossed his mind, and for what he considers to be a good reason.

“No,” said White in regards to whether or not he contemplated pulling the plug on the UFC 182 main event match. “Number one, he was healthy. Number two, the reason you would stop the fight and the hammer would drop on the guy would be if he tested for performance-enhancing drugs.”

The UFC President elaborated, pointing out the fact that he didn’t have the legal authority to pull Jones out of the fight on Saturday even if he wanted to, because of the fact that Jones signed a contract and technically-speaking, did nothing to violate the agreement.

“The other thing people have to understand in this situation — Jon Jones was contracted to fight,” said White. “And everyone thinks we can just say, ‘The fight is off. The fight is not happening,” White continued. “He had the right to fight.”

White also pointed out the fact that Cormier, who lost to Jones via unanimous decision at UFC 182 this past Saturday night, was not informed of Jones’ test result ahead of time.

“He doesn’t need to be,” said White of Cormier not knowing of Jones’ test result in advance of the bout. “If [Jones] had tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs, everything would have shut down.”

As far as the personal level is concerned, White seemed to be more focused on the health and well-being of one of his star champions, who as noted, checked into an undisclosed rehabilitation facility this past Tuesday, January 6th.

“This is one of those situations where, it’s so different than if a guy gets busted for performance-enhancing drugs,” said the UFC President. “You worry about the person first. Forget about the fighting and the work side of it and you worry about Jon Jones as a person.”

White continued, “He got checked into rehab. They’re going to be able to evaluate him, and then we’ll go from there.”

“I talked to him yesterday before he went in, and I hope we’ll be able to talk to him again today,” said White. “He was in a good place going in there and he’s in an even better place today.”

Since the Jones story surfaced earlier this week, there has been much discussion within the MMA community as to how actions have been taken in the past when a fighter tested positive for marijuana, compared to how Jones has been treated thus far after being caught with cocaine in his system leading up to a UFC fight.

“A couple years ago, if you tested positive for marijuana, fire and brimstone. It was craziness,” said White. “We followed the lead of the Nevada State Athletic Commission. That’s what we do. They’re the regulators who set the rules and how it’s going to go down. Obviously with those whole legalization of marijuana, they’ve become a lot more lenient with that and street drugs.”

“Everything happens for a reason,” said White. “It’s a great thing that guy made a mistake. It’s a great thing this happened. Who would have known? We would never have known and [wouldn’t have been able to] get him the help he needs.”

On the subject, White concluded by saging, “In a situation like this, the last thing you’re worried about is his image right now. You’re worrying about getting the guy healthy. He’ll come back. Whether you like him or not, he’s the baddest dude. He’s the pound-for-pound best guy in the world.”

For those interested, you can watch Dana White’s complete appearance on FS1’s “Amercia’s Pregame” show via the YouTube player embedded at the top of this page.

And for those who missed it, below are some recent links related to this story.

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