The UFC pulled Jon Jones from the UFC 200 main event after the United States Anti-Doping Agency notified the promotion of a possible doping violation.
The move leaves Daniel Cormier without an opponent and pushes Brock Lesnar-Mark Hunt, the de facto main event anyhow, into the featured slot.
The UFC released a statement on the matter overnight going into Thursday:
The UFC organization was notified tonight that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Jon Jones of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collection on June 16, 2016.
USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case. It is important to note that, under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full fair legal review process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed.
However, because Jones was scheduled to compete against Daniel Cormier this coming Saturday, July 9 in Las Vegas, there is insufficient time for a full review before the scheduled bout and therefore the fight has been removed from the fight card. As a result, the three-round heavyweight bout between Brock Lesnar and Mark Hunt will become the UFC 200 main event.
Consistent with all previous potential anti-doping violations, additional information or UFC statements will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward.
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Jones tested positive for cocaine in a urine sample submitted prior to his first fight with Daniel Cormier, a competitive affair that Bones nevertheless decisively won after weathering the challenger’s onslaught in the second round. Jones lost his belt subsequent to that fight outside the octagon after fleeing from the scene of a hit-and-run accident that left a pregnant woman with a broken arm and in which he left marijuana in his abandoned car. Cormier, who won the title in a bout with Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, now loses a fortune in pay-per-view revenue instead of his belt because of his hated enemy.
“This chapter in my life had been dragging me and it’s made me ugly,” Cormier said of his feud with Jones. “I have to move forward and start to clear my mind in regards to him.”