In the combat sports world, specifically Boxing and MMA, the list of transgressions that involve failed drug tests and DUI arrests is getting longer. This past week another major boxing bout came apart when former world champion Andre Berto failed a drug test and had his rematch with Victor Ortiz cancelled. Also, UFC Lightheavyweight champion Jon Jones was finally defeated by a light pole, as he was charged with being under the influence of alcohol when he rammed his Bentley into it.
These are just the latest two athletes that have come up on the radar and face a possible career bump in the road due to problems of this nature.
Now let’s not mix things up – a DUI and failing a drug test are two different things. But this might be the first chink in the armor we see on seemingly impregnable UFC champion Jon Jones, and it opens up some questions.
First of all, I have been to Ithaca. It houses a major Ivy League university in Cornell, but is otherwise in a relatively poor area of upstate New York. So just the image of the UFC Lightweight champion cruising around in a Bentley paints an interesting picture. But good lawyers will work things out, and he is unlikely to have his September meeting with Dan Henderson postponed, but he will have court dates and legal proceedings to deal with. New York is not a zero tolerance state, and he is not obligated to do any time on a first offense (is it his first?). Fifty miles south in Pennsylvania, he could not avoid doing at least a weekend in jail.
Below is a portion of Berto’s statement on his failed test reportedly for yet another steroid I cant pronounce or spell -
“At the present time, I cannot explain the positive drug test, which was provided as part of a voluntary anti-doping program in which I agreed to participate. I know that I have never used any steroids or other banned substances, and I am investigating all possible causes of the positive test with my attorney, Howard Jacobs. I have never cheated, and all of my success has come from hard work and dedication.”
I’m not saying anything either way. But does anything jump out at you in this statement. He said ‘investigating all possible causes of the positive test with my attorney’! Not a doctor or specialist, with a lawyer. All I can do is chuckle hardily.
This PED thing has the Combat Sports in a mess, and it is going to get worse before it gets better.