Before they awarded him with a license to fight in their state, the California State Athletic Commission missed out on some pretty important information. During his meeting with the media, Jeff Novitzky, who handles all the USADA cases for the UFC, said that the CSAC was not informed of the findings in Jon Jones’ testing results before their license hearing with Jones on December 11.
Speaking in a media scrum following the early weigh-ins on Friday, Novitzky confirmed that California had not been made aware of the test results prior to Jones’ hearing. As has been explained throughout the week, USADA found picograms of the metabolite oral Turinabol in Jones’ system in a sample that was collected on December 9, 2018. It was because of this finding that the Nevada State Athletic Commission did not grant Jones a license for his fight against Alexander Gustafsson which had been scheduled to take place in Las Vegas and has since been relocated to The Forum in Englewood, California.
Jones previously failed a drug test following his UFC 214 win over Daniel Cormier because of oral Turinabol and according to Novitsky and Dana White through research done by USADA, there is no sign that Jones took the substance again. The findings in his tests suggest that the picograms were so small, that there is no way Jones could inject such a small amount of the substance into his body.
When asked why CSAC was not informed of the findings before their hearing with Jones, Novitzky said that Nevada had jurisdiction to the case since that’s where the fight was scheduled to take place.
“Nevada knew at that time, but California didn’t. I mean, in hindsight, maybe USADA should have told CSAC. I’m definitely a proponent in as much transparency as possible. Unfortunately, how do you think of every scenario? I think in USADA’s mind, they had no obligation to let Nevada know about this at all. It wasn’t within their jurisdiction. I think out of an abundance of caution, they did it. Could they have given it to CSAC as well? I think potentially.”
Novitzky told Rogan that during a time period between August and September of this year that traces of the metabolite were found in Jones’ system but in tests that were taken in October and November, Jones’ tests came back negative.
Due to the test results and Nevada needing more time to review Jones’ case, the UFC moved the event to The Forum on six days notice, drawing criticism from fellow fighters, media, and fans who were inconvenienced by the move.
Marc Raimondi of MMA Fighting confirmed with CSAC executive officer Andy Foster that they were not informed of the test results before the license hearing. Due to these results, Jones is expected to meet with the Nevada State Athletic Commission next month to discuss the case and if he will be licensed moving forward.
While the situation isn’t ideal, Novitzky did say he would’ve liked for all parties to be informed earlier, but commended USADA and the CSAC for their handling of the situation and being able to come up with a resolution for the event so quickly.
Mike Pendleton is a current contributor to MyMMANews while also hosting his “On The Mic” podcast and is a former Associate Producer at Sirius XM’s Fight Nation.
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