Three of the UFC’s biggest stars might have their fighting futures determined next week in Las Vegas.
The Nevada Athletic Commission released its agenda for Tuesday’s meeting that will see Conor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov, and Jon Jones have their cases heard in regards to recent potential infractions.
In the cases of McGregor and Nurmagomedov, they will be looking to avoid long-term suspensions after engaging in a post-fight brawl at UFC 229 on Oct. 6, 2018 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Nurmagomedov successfully defended his UFC lightweight championship by submitting McGregor in the main event of that pay-per-view and then proceeded to exit the cage and get into a physical altercation with McGregor’s friend and cornerman Dillon Danis.
McGregor then exchanged punches with Nurmagomedov training partner Abubakar Nurmagomedov atop the cage as well as with Nurmagomedov associates Zubaira Tukhugov and Esedulla Emiragaev when the action spilled back into the cage. Prior to their bout, McGregor and Nurmagomedov’s camps had been embroiled in a lengthy and heated feud.
Abubakar Nurmagomedov and Tukhugov are also on Tuesday’s agenda as facing possible action from the NAC.
All the fighters involved in the UFC 229 post-fight brawl have been on indefinite suspension since the events of Oct. 6 and could be facing longer suspensions as well as fines that would go to the state’s general fund, not the commission itself.
Jones, the UFC light heavyweight champion, is aiming to be granted a license to compete in the state of Nevada. He was scheduled to fight Alexander Gustafsson in the main event of UFC 232 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Dec. 29, 2018, but the NAC would not license Jones without a hearing after abnormalities were discovered in an analysis of 18 months of drug-test results.
With less than a week’s notice, Jones was approved to fight by the California State Athletic Commission and UFC 232 was moved from Las Vegas to the Los Angeles area, where Jones went on to defeat Gustafsson via third-round TKO to reclaim the light heavyweight title.
Jones has previously been twice suspended for drug-test failures, receiving a one-year suspension retroactive to July 2016 and a 15-month suspension retroactive to July 2017 in addition to other sanctions. Jones is scheduled to defend his title against Anthony Smith in the main event of UFC 235 on March 2. That fight happening in Las Vegas is contingent on Jones being licensed Tuesday.
Regarding the events surrounding UFC 232, CSAC and USADA determined that the trace amounts of the long-term oral Turinabol metabolite that responsible for the abnormalities in Jones’ drug-test results were not evidence of a new ingestion, based on the word of experts.
On Tuesday, MMA Fighting reported that VADA test results found 33 picograms of 4-chloro-18-nor-17β-hydroxymethyl,17α-methyl-5α-androst-13-en-3α-ol (M3) (or DHMCT) in Jones’s system from a sample collected on Dec. 28, the day of the UFC 232 weigh-ins. CSAC executive officer Andy Foster told MMA Fighting’s Marc Raimondi that the commission will not be taking disciplinary action against Jones.
“I spoke with the scientists,” Foster said. “They stand by their original statement. Nothing has changed. We’ve already punished Jon Jones for the M3 metabolite, which is a long-term metabolite. There’s no grounds to charge somebody twice for the same violation.”
It is not yet known whether any of the fighters listed on next Tuesday’s agenda will physically be in attendance in Las Vegas or if they will have other representation.