Jon Jones has issued an apology to the fans who have been inconvenienced after UFC 232 was moved from Las Vegas to Los Angeles on Sunday.
The entire ordeal unfolded after a drug test administered on Dec. 9 by USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) came back with adverse results showing trace amounts of Turinabol in Jones’ system.
That’s the same drug found in Jones’ testing sample last July following his win over Daniel Cormier.
USADA later released a statement saying that the trace amounts of Turinabol in Jones’ system could only be caused by a residual effect from the original introduction of the drug into his body back in 2017. Because of that fact, USADA did not consider this a doping violation and Jones will not be sanctioned as a result.
Unfortunately, the Nevada State Athletic Commission didn’t feel comfortable allowing the fight to remain in Las Vegas without having time to further investigate the situation. The UFC then ended up moving the entire card to California because the commission there had just recently re-licensed Jones in a hearing and were familiar with the history of his testing case as well as the new results after reviewing the findings from USADA.
So Jones will still fight Alexander Gustafsson in the main event at UFC 232 but sadly many fans have been left out in the cold after purchasing tickets, flights and hotels to travel to Las Vegas in just a few days for the show.
“I just wanted to take the time out to apologize to the fans for what is going on,” Jones said in a message released on Instagram. “This is a situation that is completely out of my control but I will still man up and apologize for this happening. I realize there’s a lot of people who lost out on this situation. People came from Sweden, people came from Brazil, other fighters, I feel you guys’ frustration. Today’s been a hell of a day. Big shout to us all.
“Spent tears today cause I can feel the frustration of the fans. I’m going to do what I can to make it right for at least some of you guys. I’ve already taken care of some flights and some tickets for people. I’m doing what I can to make this right. I just wanted to assure you guys this is not a mistake I made, completely out of my control, but I do feel you guys’ pain and I’m sincerely sorry. Love you guys and God bless you guys and I guess I’ll see some of you guys in California.”
The UFC will issue refunds for the tickets purchased in Las Vegas but that doesn’t help the fans who could be out hundreds if not thousands of dollars in travel expenses for flights or hotels that are non-refundable.
Still, UFC 232 is moving forward with Jones vs. Gustafsson as the headliner with new tickets for the card at The Forum going on sale on Wednesday.