Even with Daniel Cormier retired, his beef with Jon Jones continues to spark up.
The bitter rivals went at it on social media once again last week, with Cormier questioning Jones’ attempt to steal the spotlight from his friend and teammate, UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, who recently took the the No. 1 spot in the UFC’s pound-for-pound rankings.
Naturally, that prompted Jones to respond, taking jabs at Cormier for losing big fights to him and UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic. But Jones’ wins over Cormier did not come without controversy. The former UFC light heavyweight champion’s history with performance-enhancing drugs is well documented, with him being stripped of his title multiple times for failing drug tests twice around title fights with Cormier.
It’s no secret that Cormier isn’t Jones’ fan, but what irks the former UFC two-division champ the most is how Jones claims to be innocent, despite all the PED controversy surrounding his career.
“You know what I don’t get about this guy? I don’t understand how he goes, ‘They proved me innocent.’ They never proved him innocent,” Cormier said on ESPN’s “DC and Helwani” show. “They never once said he was innocent, so I don’t get it. I don’t get how he can say that publicly and people can repeat it publicly that he was proven innocent.
“No, they said the drugs were found in his system, but through excessive cooperation or something – I can’t remember the word – they took his sentence back. It was never innocent.”
Although Jones’ second win over Cormier at UFC 214 was overturned to a no contest when he tested positive for the anabolic steroid turinabol, Jones’ sentence was significantly reduced from four years after he provided “substantial assistance” to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. As a result, he received a 15-month sentence. Jones stated he did not knowingly take any prohibited substances and that the substances he consumed were tainted.
Cormier might be happily retired, but don’t expect his spats with Jones to end anytime soon.
“It is what it is, I still can’t stand the guy and retired, not retired, see him publicly, I’ll probably still get into it. It’s just the way it is.”
A failed drug test arose in Jones’ career a third time when, prior to his UFC 232 rematch with Alexander Gustafsson, he tested positive for the same turinabol metabolites. However, USADA determined they were trace amounts in the form of picograms incapable of giving Jones a competitive advantage. Although the Nevada Athletic Commission denied Jones’ license at the time, the UFC relocated the event from Las Vegas to California on six days’ notice. Jones defeated Gustafsson in the UFC 232 headliner to reclaim the vacant light heavyweight title at The Forum in Inglewood.
Jones, 33, defended his title three times in his second reign before relinquishing it earlier this year in preparation for a move to heavyweight.