LOS ANGELES (AP) — UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones has entered a drug treatment facility after testing positive for the main metabolite of cocaine.
The UFC issued a statement supporting the 27-year-old Jones on Tuesday, three days after he defeated Daniel Cormier to cement his reputation as the world’s best pound-for-pound mixed martial artist.
“I am proud of Jon Jones for making the decision to enter a drug treatment facility,” UFC President Dana White said. “I’m confident that he’ll emerge from this program like the champion he truly is.”
Jones (21-1) was tested by the Nevada Athletic Commission last month heading into his title defense against Cormier at UFC 182 in Las Vegas. Benzoylecgonine is not banned by the commission for out-of-competition use, so Jones wasn’t penalized or suspended before he defeated Cormier by unanimous decision.
Jones was given the random test Dec. 4. His victory over Cormier, a previously unbeaten contender, was his eighth consecutive title defense since winning the belt in March 2011.
Through his attorney, Jones issued a statement to Yahoo Sports apologizing to his family, including his fiancee and their four daughters. The upstate New York native lives and trains in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
The positive drug test is the latest twist in a tumultuous career for Jones, a former junior college wrestler who has risen to the top of his sport. Jones is the brother of New England Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones and Indianapolis Colts defensive end Arthur Jones.
Jones was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated in Binghamton, New York, in 2012 after smashing his Bentley into a pole. He eventually pleaded guilty and avoided jail time.
Jones and Cormier were involved in a brawl in a casino lobby in August while promoting their bout. The Nevada commission fined both fighters and ordered them into community service.