Dana White reported in November that he won’t be placing Jon Jones in a headliner until he “consistently gets back on track”, but it looks like the former 205 champ will get a title shot in his first fight back…
As you know, 2016 did not close out well for Jones, as the star was pulled from his main event bout with Daniel Cormier at UFC 200, just a coupled days prior. Jones was flagged by USADA for the banned substances hydroxy-clomiphene and Letrozole, but since then, the fighter and his camp were able to demonstrate he didn’t knowingly ingest them. All that, of course, followed a 2015 year which saw Jones fight just once, as a result of a well documented, hit-and-run incident.
So, based off White’s previous comments, there’s been talk that perhaps Jones wouldn’t return to a title shot, But, on the latest “Unfiltered” podcast, White said this about “Bones” (quote via FOX Sports):
“Jon Jones is supposed to return around July so the timing is perfect. I haven’t talked to him. I haven’t talked to Jon Jones since the whole incident (at UFC 200),” White said.
“Depending on where Jon’s head is and where he thinks he is, I would assume he would come right back and try to get his title back.”
White went on to say that there are no tune-up fights for fighters like Jones and Ronda Rousey, and really, when you consider “Bones” has no real defeats, this isn’t surprising. Jones never really lost the light-heavyweight title. In addition, since Cormier and Anthony Johnson are booked to fight on April 8th, the latter isn’t losing out on his title shot on account of Jones anyways.