UFC’s Jon Jones, Never Beaten in a Title Fight, Just Lost His Heavyweight Belt for a Third Time

The UFC stripped Jon Jones of the light heavyweight championship title Wednesday following his positive drug test and reinstated Daniel Cormier as champion.

Jones tested positive for a steroid prior to his July 29 title fight against Cormier, which he won in a third-round TKO.

The second sample from Jones’s failed test also came back positive Tuesday and the Cormier fight was subsequently ruled a “no contest” by the California State Athletic Commission.

Jones, 30, was previously banned for a year after failing a doping test in the run-up to a title fight against Cormier in July, 2016.

Jon Jones Jon Jones at Honda Center, Anaheim, California, July 29. Sean M. Haffey/Getty

He was originally stripped of the title in 2015 following a hit-and-run incident. As a repeat offender, he faces a suspension of up to four years.

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Cormier, speaking on UFC Tonight, said he was unsure whether to accept the belt but was convinced by Dana White, the president of UFC.

He said: “I talked to Andy Foster (Executive Director of the California State Athletic Commission) and I was like, 'Man, you know, I lost. I lost the fight.' As a competitor, that's how I felt. Then Dana White called me today and he said, 'If it's a No Contest, then the fight didn't happen.'”

“He said, 'If one of you guys would have missed weight [and] he would have won the fight, you still would have kept the belt. He said, 'because of that the championship is getting returned to you, the fight is a No Contest. If he cheated, he could not have fought and cheated and still won the fight.”