On Tuesday, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) informed both the UFC and Heavyweight star Brock Lesnar that a positive in-competition drug test had been returned for his UFC 200 appearance on July 9th.
More troubling is that Lesnar tested positive for the same banned substance in an out-of-competition drug test on June 28th.
“The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Brock Lesnar that his in-competition sample collection from July 9, 2016, at UFC 200, has tested positive for the same substance as his previously announced out-of-competition collection on June 28, 2016,” the UFC said in a released statement.
Interim UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones was pulled from the same UFC 200 card, a light heavyweight unification bout opposite Daniel Cormier, three days prior to fight time. The scrapped bout was also due to testing positive in an out-of-competition USADA screening.
The fact that Jones’ test came back before fight time, albeit inconvenient for rematch hungry fans and UFC bean counters, saved Cormier from any further potential danger a fight can yield.
(Photo Credit: blacksportsonline.com)
Mark Hunt wasn’t so lucky and he succumbed to the 265-pound athletic prowess of Lesnar while losing a unanimous decision at UFC 200. Hunt, however, is fighting back via Twitter.
Hunt asked UFC officials for half of Lesnar's purse, or else he would like to be released from his contract effective immediately. He then changed to wanting Lesnar’s full purse. Hunt said the UFC has not yet responded to his request.
Weeks before the event, Hunt told Fox Sports Australia that he believed Lesnar was “juiced to the gills.”
Breaking protocol, the UFC granted Lesnar an exemption from its rule which states that a fighter coming out of retirement must inform USADA four months out so that fighter can be placed into the drug testing pool.
Lesnar last fought for the UFC in 2011. The UFC felt that since it has been so long since Lesnar competed, he did not have to give USADA four months notice.
Nevada Deputy Attorney General Caroline Bateman has asked for an extension of Jon Jones’ temporary suspension until he can be brought in for a full disciplinary hearing. Jones could sit out for up to two years during his prime fighting years.
As first revealed by Rashad Evans and Chael Sonnen during their respective UFC 200 media coverage, Jones’ tests revealed estrogen blocking agents named Hydroxy Clomiphene (an anti-estrogenic agent) and Letrozole metabolite (an aromatase inhibitor) as the two substances he tested positive for in his June 16 out-of-competition drug screen.
(Photo Credit: Yahoo Sports)
“If I do have to sit for two years, I’ll definitely be back,” Jones said, shedding tears at his initial press conference when the news was made public during UFC 200 week. “At the end of the day, I’m a fighter. I’m a fighter. Even if I may seem broken right here, I’m not broken. I’m just really upset. I’ll find the good in this.”
Howard Jacobs, Jones’ attorney did not object to any of the details laid out by Bateman and did not object to extending Jones’ suspension. Lesnar’s attorney has yet to comment.
MMA light heavyweight and former Jon Jones opponent Ovince St. Preux has been very vocal about his April 23rd unanimous decision loss to Jones at UFC 197 on social media, questioning Jones’ integrity and demanding the truth from a now-perceived dirty fighter.
(Ovince St. Preux, Photo Credit: Zuffa, LLC)
"On June 18th, Jon Jones was caught taking Post Cycle Therapy (PCT) drugs," said OSP on his Facebook page. "This means he was on some form of Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDS) before this date.The only real questions a re: When did he start taking them? Was it before his fight with me or after? There are not many people who can answer this question, but Jon Jones is one of them. So, I am asking: When did you start taking PEDS Jon? I wanted to fight the best fighter in the world, but I did not sign up to fight a cheater. So, be a stand-up person, tell us all the truth. We all know you were on PEDS because you got caught taking PCT drugs. Just tell the world the truth."
Georges St. Pierre famously walked away from the sport of MMA in December 2013 after successfully defending his UFC welterweight championship for a 10th time at UFC 167.
At the time, amid a need for rest, St-Pierre said he would not return to the UFC unless there was an independent organization running the drug testing for the promotion.
He even attempted to get the Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency (VADA) to run a testing program for his title defense against Johny Hendricks in 2013 at UFC 167.
(Georges St, Pierre, Photo Credit: Eric Williams)
It helped spur the UFC to contract with USADA. However, the process needs to work faster like it did with Jones to prevent a potential competitive advantage, instead of fighters receiving results after they have already fought.
With new ownership in the form of WME/IMG, which just purchased the UFC for $4.2 billion, can nascent fight promoters under the direction of Dana White ever fix this problem?
(Photo Credit: USA Today)
St. Pierre revealed why he left MMA to news outlet The Globe and Mail. His words came after former UFC middleweight champion Anderson had tested positive for the anabolic steroid drostanolone during a random out-of-competition test administered by the Nevada State Athletic Commission leading up to his UFC 183 fight against Nick Diaz in January 2015
“I don’t want to talk about one individual, I want to talk about the system,” said St. Pierre. “The system is a big problem in the sport of mixed martial arts ... It’s something that I believe the UFC and fighters should confront and deal with it. Because if you don’t deal with it right now, it’s going to get worse and worse and worse.”