UFC officials have stripped Jon Jones of his light heavyweight championship and suspended him indefinitely.
News of the decision was made on “FOX Sports Live” Tuesday night.
Jones was expected to face Anthony Johnson at UFC 187 for the title in Las Vegas.
The event will now feature Daniel Cormier taking on Johnson for the title. Earlier this year, Jones successfully defended the belt via decision over Cormier.
On Sunday, Jones was involved in a hit-and-run incident in Albuquerque that left a pregnant woman with a broken arm. He faces a felony charge over the incident and met with UFC officials in New Mexico on Tuesday.
“Obviously, he’s very disappointed,” UFC president Dana White said. “He wanted to go down as one of the greatest ever, but it is what it is. The show must go on.”
As for Jones’ fighting future with the UFC, White said “I don’t know what’s going to happen. He needs to focus on his legal matters.”
Jones admitted in January that he used cocaine prior to his fight with Cormier. He entered into a drug rehab facility, but stayed just one day. Jones also had an arrest for driving under the influence in 2012 when he crashed his Bentley in New York.
In 2011, Jones became the youngest UFC champion in history when he defeated Mauricio “Shogun” Rua. He successfully defended the belt vs. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Lyoto Machida, Rashad Evans, Vitor Belfort, Chael Sonnen, Alexander Gustafsson and Glover Teixeira.
Cormier was scheduled to meet Ryan Bader in Louisiana on June 6, but UFC official Dave Sholler said a new main event will be announced in the coming days.
Here is the official and complete statement from the UFC:
UFC announced that it has suspended Jon Jones indefinitely and stripped him of the light heavyweight title as a result of violations of the organization’s Athlete Code of Conduct Policy. Jones was recently arrested in Albuquerque, N.M. on a felony charge of leaving the scene of an accident involving personal injury. As a result of the charge and other violations of the Athlete Code of Conduct Policy, the organization believes it is best to allow Jones time to focus on his pending legal matters.
UFC feels strongly that its athletes must uphold certain standards both in and out of the Octagon. While there is disappointment in the recent charges, the organization remains supportive of Jones as he works through the legal process.
With this decision, UFC has determined that No. 1 contender Anthony Johnson will now fight No. 3 contender Daniel Cormier for the UFC light heavyweight championship at UFC 187 on May 23 in Las Vegas.