UFC Brass 'Disappointed' in Jon Jones, Call Actions 'Dumb,' but UFC 197 Goes on

Scott Harris@ScottHarrisMMAMMA Lead WriterApril 1, 2016

Jon Jones
Jon JonesJosh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

The UFC was not impressed with Jon Jones' performance.

Jones was arrested Tuesday for violating his probation. He received a fresh round of traffic violations after verbally sparring with police in Albuquerque, New Mexico and was released from a short jail stint on Thursday.

In a video interview posted Thursday with TMZ Sports, UFC President Dana White shared his perspective on Jones' behavior, particularly the part where he insulted the officers.

"When I get pulled over by the police, I'm the most polite human being you've ever met in your life," White said in the interview. "There's no upside to talking back to the police. It's the dumbest thing you can ever do, especially if you're in Jon Jones' position."

The interview came out not long after the UFC put out an official statement on the Jones situation (h/t Damon Martin of Fox Sports). In part, the statement read that "the organization was disappointed to learn that Jones was cited for several traffic offenses last week, as well as concerned by the nature and tone of portions of the conversation between Jones and the citing officer."

Although UFC officials' disappointment and incredulity appear substantial, they were not substantial enough, in this case, to cancel Jones' title bout with light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier on April 23 at UFC 197.

In its statement, the UFC cited Jones' right to defend himself from the charges as their reason for continuing with the UFC 197 main event.

"UFC respects Jones' right to contest those traffic citations in court and receive a fair hearing on the matter," the statement read. "Jones' scheduled bout on April 23 will proceed as planned, however, Jones understands that the UFC expects him to fully cooperate with the terms of his probation."

The latest incident stems from a traffic stop March 24, during which Jones received five traffic tickets for drag racing and several similar charges. During the stop, which was videotaped (warning: language NSFW) by a police body camera, Jones and the officer take turns provoking and insulting each other, with Jones calling the officer a "pig" and a "liar," among other things.

The five tickets were enough to constitute a violation of Jones' 18-month probation, which Jones received after pleading guilty last fall to a 2015 felony hit-and-run collision.

The UFC stripped Jones of his title and suspended him indefinitely in the wake of that incident. UFC 197 will mark Jones' first fight since he received that suspension.

Widely considered the best MMA fighter in the world at any weight class, the 28-year-old Jones (21-1) defeated Cormier in his last fight, which took place January 2015 at UFC 182.


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