Dana White has confirmed that Jon Jones will not be fighting in a main event when he returns to the UFC.
As the dust settles on a dramatic UFC 210, with Daniel Cormier coming away still champion of the light heavyweight division and Anthony “Rumble” Johnson announcing his retirement after his loss, all eyes immediately turned to Jones.
“Bones” has been lurking in the wings of the division ever since he was handed a twelve-month suspension by the United States Anti Doping Agency (USADA) in the aftermath of last summer’s UFC 200 fiasco. He tested positive only a couple of days before the landmark event in which he and Cormier were due to main event in a light heavyweight title unification bout.
When flagged for an illegal substance by USADA, the youngest ever UFC world champion put the blip down to a “contaminated sex pill.”
With Jones’ suspension coming to an end this summer, talk of his potential comeback fight is beginning to pick up pace. Will he reignite the spiteful feud with long-time nemesis Cormier and fall immediately into a bout for the title? Or will he have a tune-up fight before he gets a crack at winning back his old belt?
UFC president White has confirmed he has not spoken to the 29-year-old about a potential opponent for when he returns yet. However, Dana is certain of one thing – Jones is not someone he can fully trust to headline a PPV event for him anytime soon.
As a rematch between DC and Bones would likely be one of the biggest PPV events of the year for the promotion, this news that the company do not want to throw one the most talented fighters to ever compete in the UFC into a main event slot straight away probably directs Jones in the path of a tune-up fight before he can get his hands on the wrestler fighting out of AKA Gym in California.
In Buffalo, New York on Saturday after the fights, White was asked where he sees the light heavyweight division going from here and where Jones fits into the fray.
Reiterating how untrustworthy he feels the controversial maverick to be, he told Fox Sports:
“If Jones fights, Jones is going to be a co-main event anyway.
“I’d put just about everybody ahead [of Jones] and make them the main event.
“I just don’t have the faith right now that the fight’s going to happen. I don’t want to spend millions and millions of dollars again promoting a fight that doesn’t happen.”
Aaron Ward, Pundit Arena