With less than a month until he treis to take his belt back from Daniel Cormier at UFC 197, former UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones was pulled over last Thursday and issued five different citations, including one for drag racing.
In a statement, Jones said he wasn’t drag racing. Or speeding at all, for that matter. “I feel that police used a technicality to ticket me for drag racing, for simply revving my engine and acknowledging some of my local fans,” he said. “I regrettably said words to the police officer out of frustration, for which I apologize for, but I do feel this was excessive.”
Five days after the incident, it’s Jones’ “words” that are getting more attention than any moving violations he may have committed. Here’s the body cam video of him speaking those words:
If you've ever wondered what it would sound like for a child cop pulled over a child driver, you know how your answer. But even if the cop was annoying Jones and lying, as Jones contends, the fighter would have been wise to shut up.
His history of getting into trouble in his car is already too long. In February, he was pulled over a cited for driving without a license. And last Aril he was stripped of his light heavyweight title and suspended by the UFC for his role in a felony hit and run. It was the first time a UFC fighter lost his belt due to out-of-the-cage behavior.
Jones’ latest run in with an Albuquerque cop doesn’t rise nearly to that level, but the citations could come back to haunt him and the UFC. As a part of his probation, Jones is not supposed to break any laws.
So there’s a non-zero chance he’ll be kept out of UFC 197. For someone who’s been working his way back to the Octagon for over a year, that would be devastating. And for a promotion that's continually watched its biggest stars go down in flames, it would be worse.