Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones has had many issues outside of the Octagon. Through the years, he has never really owned up to them, to the chagrin of his fans.
But Bones took to social media recently to admit his faults, explain his perspective and inform the world to trust the process.
“Yes I’m a Christian,” Jones wrote on Instagram. “Yes, I make hypocritical decisions. Yes, I fail. I stumble. I struggle. I am a mess. But I’m God’s mess. And he can turn a mess into a masterpiece.”
The quote mirrors the Twitter profile caption of Christian rap artist Lecrae.
Yes I’m a Christian. Yes I make hypocritical decisions. Yes I fall. I stumble. I struggle. I am a mess. But I’m God’s mess. And he can turn a mess into a masterpiece.
— Lecrae (@lecrae) November 3, 2018
Jones (26-1, 1 NC) has had a succession of issues throughout his career that have permanently marred his brand. Jones’s former in-cage nemesis, Daniel “DC” Cormier’s main point of contention about Jones was always his lifestyle choices.
UFC President Dana White also chimed in on Jones’ penchant for trouble after his latest arrest for domestic abuse in Las Vegas the night of being inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame. Jones was accused of abusing his fiancee in a hotel room in Las Vegas.
“It’s not even shocking anymore,” said White. “When we bring him here, it’s almost expected. We can’t even get him to Las Vegas for less than 12 hours and induct him into the Hall of Fame. It’s a problem. This guy’s got a lot of demons, man, a lot of demons.”
In 2012, Jones crashed into a pole with his Bentley Continental GT in his native Binghamton, New York. Jones was charged with a DUI and pleaded guilty. He paid a $1,000 fine and had his license suspended for six months. Later in 2015, he was involved in a hit-and-run accident in Albuquerque, New Mexico, after running a red light and crashing into a pregnant woman.
Jones fled the scene only to come back to grab cash out of the car and run again. Police found a cannabis pipe, cannabis, and rental car paperwork identifying Jones as the renter. In 2016, he was caught by police on suspicion of drag racing.
Although Jones is widely considered the greatest mixed martial artist of all time, Bones has had issues with substance abuse in the past.
He tested positive for a cocaine metabolite before his 2015 UFC 182 fight against Daniel Cormier and entered a treatment facility. In 2016, UFC 200, headlined initially by Jones, speed bumped when Jones tested positive for the banned substances clomiphene and letrozole.
However, after Jones’ latest domestic abuse allegation, his longtime coach, John Winklejohn, banned him from the Jackson-Winklejohn Academy, where Jones trained alongside Claressa Shields, Holly Holm, and more.
Since February 8th, 2020, he hadn’t fought when he won a unanimous decision against Dominick Reyes at UFC 247. Jones has sought to fight at heavyweight but has been unhappy with the UFC’s financial terms.
However, Jones’ random admission can be deemed the culmination of years of misguided energy that has finally left him abandoned by many he loves. No fights booked, no gym to call home, and a world of doubt surrounding his claim to be the GOAT.
Could the social media post be a cry for help or a desire for redemption? Only Jones knows; his actions outside the Octagon have spoken louder than inside of it, and his legacy is on the line.