Jon Jones received a reduced suspension from USADA but says he did not “snitch” on any other fighters.
The UFC’s anti-doping partner suspended the former light heavyweight champion for 15 months in September, retroactive to his August 2017 positive drug test. It was a reduced suspension because Jones provided USADA with “substantial assistance” to help eliminate doping in MMA.
Many fans subsequently accused Jones of snitching on other fighters, but “Bones” told ESPN he did not do such a thing.
“USADA asked me to do a lot of things throughout this case, but one thing I didn’t do is snitch on anybody in MMA,” Jones said. “I definitely didn’t give up any information on anyone in the sport, nor do I know of anybody who’s doing these things in the sport.
“I think the whole snitching thing is pretty silly. It’s interesting to watch people jump to conclusions about things they don’t know what they are talking about.”
Jones tested positive in a drug test related to his rematch with Daniel Cormier last year. An independent arbitrator finally determined last month that Jones did not knowingly use a banned substance, ruling that his positive test likely stemmed from some sort of a tainted product.
Jones is eligible to return to the cage on October 28th.
Jones said he ultimately isn’t bothered when fans call him a snitch. He understands that he’ll always be talked about — often negatively — because of his popularity and stature in the sport and is OK with that.
“I understand who I am in this sport,” he said. “I understand that I’m always going to be somewhat of a controversial athlete in our sport. I understand that I’m going to be a guy that’s very fun to talk about whether it’s for the good or bad. I’m just grateful to be relevant at the end of the day. When you are one of the better athletes in the sport, people are going to talk about you.”
It took more than a year for USADA to suspend Jones, but the association did eventually clear his name, so he’s ultimately happy with how it all played out.
“Proving your innocence can take a lot of time. Me and my team, we didn’t really care how long this would take,” Jones said. “We just wanted to get all of our facts out and prove our innocence, no matter how long it took. So, if 15 months is how long it took, I feel happy with it.
“I think they were very fair. Once they were able to establish that this wasn’t my intention, they let me go. So I think they treated me fairly.”
Jones is expected to face Alexander Gustafsson at the end of the year, but the fight is not official as of yet.