Following UFC 182, news broke that UFC light heavyweight kingpin Jon Jones had failed a pre-fight random drug test for the primary metabolite in cocaine, Benzoylecgonine.
Jones entered a rehab facility in New Mexico following the news of the drug test results surfacing, and no action has been taken by the commission due to the fact that Benzoylecgonine is not banned out-of-competition.
Jones striking coach, Mike Winkeljohn spoke to Submission Radio to discuss the drug test results, and his reaction to them.
“I was surprised by it. I know they had drug tested him [Jon Jones]. I didn’t know anything had come up. I was unaware of it, and we’re disappointed, but at the same time we’re glad that Jon is taking the steps necessary to solve this problem. And he’s young. Everybody’s made mistakes, and I’m not the one that….I mean I’ll give him a hard time when we talk about it next again, but we’re still standing behind Jon, and we like to have him around. He’s got a great heart, he treats his teammates well, he treats his coaches well, he treats the family well. It just it sucks that that happened. It’s sad to see him put himself in that position, but with that being said I think the future’s bright for Jon. He will learn from it and go forward”
While some say Jones could have potentially benefitted from his cocaine usage, Mike Winkeljohn believes the opposite.
“No. You know I think it’d definitely be detrimental because it’s going to take you – when you come down on it – it’s going to take your attention away from what you need to do. It’s going to have a negative impact. Actually I think it’s going to be worse for his training if he’s getting out of focus and going out, and if someone’s going out and getting high, and then having to come back to training after that type of situation. They’re not doing everything they need to do to compete. So I think it’s actually a distraction and it’s a shame, but you know it’s happened to a lot of people before and I don’t know why it happened. But again like I said, I hope he learns from it.”
Despite Winkeljohn’s understanding of the severity of the situation, he also believes that fans should not discredit Jones win over Cormier.
“Well you know it is a big deal and we take it serious because we want the best for Jon. I want him to grow of course. So I think it is a big deal. I’m glad it’s being considered a big deal, but as far as the fans and the outsiders taking it to discredit his fight, or I think a lot of it has to do with wanting to see him fall because he’s on top. So they’re doing it for the wrong reasons. I’m pissed off about it and not happy about it because it’s not good for Jon Jones long term life wise. He’s gotta be better for he himself, his family, and the people that look up to him. But a lot of people are down on Jon Jones ’cause they want to see the great ones fall; because they don’t feel good about themselves. So they have to see the winner lose, and that sucks for them, for those individuals that spend their whole day on the internet, telling everybody all of the bad things that Jon Jones did. I’m thinking to myself, get a life.”