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UFC’s Dana White Explains Why Jon Jones “Had Right to Fight”

Kelsey Mowatt

Jon jones

There have been mixed reactions regarding the news that Jon Jones tested positive for cocaine metabolites heading into UFC 182, and there continues to be debate as whether the promotion should have, or could have, pulled the light-heavyweight champ from Saturday’s event. According to UFC President Dana White, however, the promotion had no choice but to proceed with Jones-Cormier, which, as you know, was one of the most highly anticipated fights in recent memory…

White appeared on FOX Sports 1 recently to discuss Jones, and the UFC President repeated that the promotion’s primary concern is that the star gets better. Jones, as you likely heard, has announced that he’s entered a drug rehab program.

According to multiple reports, White was also asked whether the promotion could have pulled Jones from the January 3rd bout, since they were aware of his pre-fight, test results. Here is what White had to say (quotes via MMA Junkie.com):

“What happened was, so they do these tests leading up to a fight, these random drug tests, and he tested positive,” White said. “No, (there was no talk of postponing the fight) because No. 1, he was healthy. No. 2, the reason you would stop a fight and the hammer would drop on a guy would be if he tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs.

“(Daniel Cormier) was not (informed of the failed test) because he didn’t need to be. If he tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs, everything would have got shut down. The other thing people have to understand about this situation is Jon Jones was contracted to fight. We have a contract with him. Everybody thinks that we can just say, ‘Hey, the fight’s off. The fight’s not happening.’ Damn right he had the right to fight.”

Now, some have floated the argument that the UFC might have been able to intervene, by claiming that Jones violated the company’s code of conduct. Others, of course, don’t believe that was necessary. The Nevada Commission didn’t step in, since cocaine metabolites are not a banned, out of competition substance.

It’s certainly been a crazy few weeks no?

UFC 182 went down in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Jones worked his way to a unanimous decision win over Cormier in the main event.

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