Saturday’s upcoming UFC 200 card has taken a big hit, as the headlining light heavyweight championship unification rematch between Jon “Bones” Jones and Daniel Cormier was officially canceled Wednesday night thanks to a potential doping violation from Jones:

This led to a press conference carried live on ESPN with Jeff Nowitzky (remember him?! He’s a former IRS and FDA agent who was a big part of investigations into the BALCO scandal and Lance Armstrong’s doping, and has been the UFC’s vice-president of athlete health and safety (and in charge of their anti-doping program) since April 2015) speaking about how the timeframe here required Jones to be pulled from the event even though a violation hasn’t firmly been established yet, plus UFC president Dana White looking very, very unhappy:

There’s obviously going to be plenty of fallout from this, as the Jones-Cormier match was so highly hyped that it even dwarfed Brock Lesnar’s return to the octagon. With Jones-Cormier off, Lesnar’s match against Mark Hunt has been moved up to the main event:

This is the second big change for UFC 200, which initially was supposed to feature a Conor McGregor-Nate Diaz rematch until McGregor’s sudden “retirement” in April in a dispute over required promotional appearances. That dispute between McGregor and White has since been (at least somewhat) resolved,  with a McGregor-Diaz fight now set for UFC 202, but it forced the UFC to come up with another major fight for the big second century event. The Jones – Cormier rematch was supposed to be that, with Lesnar and Hunt in a supporting role. Many fans haven’t reacted well to the change:

But hey, at least the UFC was still able to promote the old card during the presser announcing it was toast!

This probably is not so good for Fox Sports Live’s presumably-pretaped segment with Jones and Cormier, though. Although it might be fun to watch in retrospect now!

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously worked at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.

Comments are closed.