Third Time’s a Charm

If the Ultimate Fighting Championship still gave individual titles to its pay-per-view events like it did over the nineties and noughties, an appropriate tagline for Jon Jones’ return fight at UFC 232 would be “Unrepentant.” For after three suspensions over three and a half years — all the result of his perilous lack of judgment — Jones still talks and acts like some kind of martyr.

“[A]t the end of the day, we all have done things that we’re not proud of; we’ve all made mistakes. The difference is you can google me” he said at the UFC 232 press conference to promote his rematch with Alexander Gustafsson, one of many deflections and platitudes he would dispense over the 30-minute event. He charmingly declined to address apparent contradictions between the arbitration award concerning his reduced United States Anti-Doping Agency penalty — which spotlighted “substantial assistance” Jones provided in relation to other USADA investigations and sanctions — and his comments after the fact; and when asked what he had learned during his time away from the sport, he seemed, for an uncomfortably long period of time, unable to come up with an answer

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