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Friday 16, Jun 2017

  Ian McCall Cleared Of Potential Doping Violation By USADA

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UFC flyweight Ian McCall has been cleared of potential doping violation by the United States Anti-Doping Agency.

The anti-doping agency granted a retroactive therapeutic use exemption to the UFC fighter from an incident that occurred around UFC 208 in February. USADA said McCall would not face any disciplinary action after he received an IV before being pulled from his previously scheduled bout in February.

McCall was supposed to face Jarred Brooks at UFC 208 in Brooklyn on February 11 but he was removed from the card. McCall was later transported to a local hospital with gastrointestinal issues.

Officials from USADA disclosed that an intravenous infusion of saline was given to McCall on the advice of his physician prior to his fight at UFC 208. Athletes are not allowed to receive an IV more than 50mL per a six hour period under regulations of the World Anti-Doping Agency even though saline is not a banned substance. All IVs of more than 50mL per six-hour period are prohibited under anti-doping policy of the UFC unless the athlete receives a TUE in advance or if the infusion is legitimately received in the course of hospital admissions, surgical procedures, or clinical investigations.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency announced that it had determined after a thorough investigation of the circumstances surrounding the potential violation that included the retroactive therapeutic use exemption application process that Ian McCall had a diagnosed acute medical condition for which the use of an intravenous infusion is consistent with the standard of care. It was further commented by USADA that his use of a prohibited method will not result in an anti-doping policy violation because the TUE application of McCall was granted retroactively.

The UFC flyweight last competed at UFC 183 on January 31, 2015 where he lost to John Lineker via a unanimous decision. McCall has pulled out of proposed bouts vs. Neil Seery citing illness, against Dustin Ortiz because of injury, and lost prospective foes Ray Borg at UFC 203 because of illness and Justin Scoggins to weight cut issues.

The American mixed martial artist who competes in the flyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship has fought for World Extreme Cagefighting and Tachi Palace Fights in the past. The first fight of McCall in Tachi Palace Fights was against Jussier Formiga, who at the time was ranked as the #1 Flyweight in the world. McCall defeated Formiga with a unanimous decision victory and then went on to defeat previously unbeaten prospect Dustin Ortiz at Tachi Palace Fights 9 to set up a championship bout with the TPF Flyweight Champion Darrell Montague at TPF 10: Tachi Palace Fights 10 where he won by submitting Montague in round 3 with a rear naked choke. McCall faced Demetrious Johnson in the opening round of the inaugural UFC Flyweight Champion tournament and this fight was the first flyweight bout in the history of UFC.

A professional MMA competitor since 2002, McCall is #6 in the official UFC flyweight rankings as of February 8, 2017.

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: Ian McCall Cleared Of Potential Doping Violation By USADA

Friday 09, Jun 2017

  Hunt Given Green Light To Sue Brock Lesnar And UFC

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The high-profile case of UFC star Mark Hunt against the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), Dana White, and Brock Lesnar has been given green light as his lawsuit survived a motion to dismiss.

Hunt has alleged that the UFC, White, and Lesnar committed fraud, battery, racketeering, and civil conspiracy with regards to the failed drug test of Lesnar at UFC 200. Lesnar beat Hunt by unanimous decision but the victory of Lesnar was overturned. Lesnar was later suspended by both USADA (United States Ant-Doping Agency) and the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) fined him.

Hunt is alleging that the UFC, White, and Lesnar knew about the failed test before the bout. The claims of Hunt go further as the UFC star stated that he was financially and physically damaged by what his legal team has alleged was a criminal conspiracy.

The complaint reads Brock Lesnar, Dana White, and the UFC acted in concert as set forth fully above, to defraud Mark Hunt and commit a battery against Hunt by a scheme to knowingly pit Hunt, a clean fighter, against Lesnar, a doping fighter, to the wrongful benefit of defendants and to the detriment of Hunt.

The UFC waived its rule that permits return of fighters must be in the USADA testing program for four months before competing again. Lesnar was only tested starting about one month out of UFC 200. The fighter did cleared multiple USADA tests in June before a June 28 sample that was taken 11 days prior to the July 9 fight came back positive after UFC 200. Lesnar tested positive for Clomiphene (Clomid), the banned substance in a USADA pre-fight, out-of-competition test and then tested positive for the same substance on fight night. The pre-fight test result did not come back before his fight against Hunt at UFC 200 that allows him to fight and defeat Hunt by unanimous decision.

It was continued in the complaint that White and UFC, on information and belief, were intentionally delaying the announcement because Lesnar was using banned substances and needed additional time in order to circumvent testing procedures. Hunt claimed in interviews to preview UFC 200 that he knew his opponent was “juicing” but didn’t care and would knock him out anyway and the legal team of UFC included that in their motion to dismiss the case. The complaint by Hunt also mentions failed drug tests by Frank Mir and Antonio Silva, two previous Hunt opponents, and a questionable Vitor Belfort drug test before his fight with Jon Jones in 2012. This information was supplied as evidence of the UFC’s questionable handling of past doping situations.

Mark Hunt is claiming compensation for loss of earnings after the defeat, lucrative personal appearances and endorsements that he claims have been lost due to his defeat. The UFC fighter is also claiming treble damages “pursuant to stature,” and punitive damages sufficient to deter illegal doping in the sport of mixed martial arts. Hunt has also asked the court for the defendants to expel their “ill-gotten profits.”

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: Hunt Given Green Light To Sue Brock Lesnar And UFC

Tuesday 07, Feb 2017

  Brock Lesnar Conspired To Break Anti-Doping Regulations

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The lead attorney of UFC heavyweight Mark Hunt has alleged that the UFC comeback of Brock Lesnar fits into a larger pattern of selective enforcement of UFC anti-doping laws.

Hunt’s attorney Christina Denning remarked there is nothing deterring American professional wrestler and mixed martial artist Brock Lesnar from doping, getting $5 million-plus from pay-per-view and the purse, and just turning around to pay a nominal fraction of that when they have no desire to come back to the UFC, anyway. Christina added the avenue to punish Brock is there and it is just not being executed by the UFC, which is a problem, because this is what happens in every situation.

The lawsuit suit was filed in Nevada District Court against the UFC, its president Dana White, and Hunt’s former opponent and WWE star Brock Lesnar. It cites federal racketeering and fraud violations and alleges that the defendants affirmatively circumvented and obstructed fair competition for their own benefit, including being complicit in doping proliferation under the guise of advancing ‘the best anti-doping program in all of professional sports.’

Hunt’s attorney remarked her client wants to be compensated for Lesnar and the promotion’s alleged impropriety. Denning remarked we are not making any allegations as to which defendant is more responsible than the other and added we just want a bunch of money based on what the statutes allow us. Denning remarked there are punitive damages at issue here sufficient to punish the UFC, and the UFC has a lot of money.

Denning went on to remark that the jury is not going to award that much in damages if you are suing somebody for fraud and punitive damages, and they only make $100,000 a year but when you are the UFC and the jury sits and hears about how awful and how egregious the pattern of conduct was leading up to UFC 200 and going back to prior fights, knowing how much the UFC’s worth, they can award an amount sufficient to deter future conduct.

Denning added Lesnar conspired with the UFC to evade the rules and fight her client with an unfair advantage. The lead attorney said Lesnar essentially admitted he was in on the scheme when he previously remarked he had been negotiating with the UFC since this past March. Denning said Lesnar was coming from the WWE and on steroids and he could not sign up officially with the UFC in March, because he is going to be dumped into this program for doping and he is going to fail. The UFC was also criticized by Denning for granting Lesnar an exemption from a four-month testing window normally required for fighters coming out of retirement and contended that UFC and Lesnar were only looking for a big payout and did not want the anti-doping rules to get in the way. Denning said Lesnar talked about how big he is and how much money he would be going to make on this and added he purposely conspired to circumvent doping regulations.

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: Brock Lesnar Conspired To Break Anti-Doping Regulations

Thursday 07, Jul 2016

  Jon Jones Pulled From UFC 200 For Potential Anti-Doping Violation

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UFC interim light heavyweight champion Jon Jones has been ruled out of his bout with incumbent champion Daniel Cormier in the main event of UFC 200 this Saturday at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Jeff Novitzky, the UFC’s vice president of athlete health and performance, remarked Jones tested positive for a banned substance in an out-of-competition sample taken on June 16 by the United States Anti-Doping Agency. Regarded as the No 1 pound-for-pound fighter in MMA, Jones has failed drug tests in two of his past three scheduled fights. Jones tested positive for apparent cocaine use before his first fight with Cormier at UFC 182 in January 2015.

In a statement, UFC said the UFC organization was notified that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Jon Jones of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collection on June 16, 2016. The statement further reads that USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case. It was further added that it important to note that, under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full fair legal review process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. The UFC statement also disclosed that there is insufficient time for a full review before the scheduled bout because Jones was scheduled to compete against Daniel Cormier this coming Saturday, July 9 in Las Vegas and therefore the fight has been removed from the fight card.

The statement also reads the three-round heavyweight bout between Brock Lesnar and Mark Hunt as a result will become the UFC 200 main event. UFC President Diana White said the new headliner will be the previous co-main event heavyweight bout between Mark Hunt (12-10-1 MMA, 7-4-1 UFC) and former heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar (5-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC).

The American mixed martial artist served a suspension for much of 2015 after his involvement in a hit-and-run accident. He now faces a further two years’ ban, which would take him to the age of 30 and could go as high as four years for “aggravating circumstances.” He was just returning from a ban of one year hit and run incident and was stripped of the UFC crown by the fight organization.

Widely regarded as one of the greatest fighters of all time, Jon Jones became the youngest champion in the history of the Ultimate Fighting Championship when he won the title in March 2011 at the age of 23. The UFC Light Heavyweight Champion was reinstated into the UFC in October 2015 following his arrest on felony hit-and-run charges. His UFC debut came against Andre Gusmão at UFC 87 on August 9, 2008 and took a unanimous decision victory and won his next bout against veteran Stephan Bonnar at UFC 94 on January 31, 2009 to earn another unanimous decision victory. Jones then went on to defeat former IFL Light Heavyweight Champion Vladimir Matyushenko by TKO in the first round on August 1, 2010, at UFC Live: Jones vs. Matyushenko.

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: Jon Jones Pulled From UFC 200 For Potential Anti-Doping Violation

Saturday 11, Jun 2016

  UFC Featherweight Chad Mendes Flagged For ‘Potential’ USADA Violation

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Two-time featherweight title contender Chad Mendes has been flagged for a “potential Anti-Doping Policy violation” stemming from an out-of-competition drug test collected by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), according to an announcement by the UFC.

However, the UFC did not specify the nature of the banned substance found in the sample of Mendes. The 31-year-old Mendes is currently the No. 4 ranked featherweight in the UFC’s media-generated rankings. Mendes has been out of action since December 2015, when he suffered a first-round knockout loss at the hands of Frankie Edgar at The Ultimate Fighter 22 Finale. Mendes has dropped three of his last four contests including a failed bid for the interim UFC featherweight title against Conor McGregor at UFC 189. The two-time featherweight title contender has twice fought for the UFC featherweight title and lost to former longtime champion Jose Aldo via first-round knockout in 2012 and then fell short via decision in a highly competitive rematch in 2014.

An official UFC statement read the UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Chad Mendes of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collection. The statement further reads USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case. The UFC statement continued it important to note that, under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full and fair review process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed and further added that additional information will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward.

In the last few weeks, many UFC fighters have failed anti-doping tests.

B.J. Penn was suspended after he disclosed IV use that is prohibited by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. A UFC statement reads Penn disclosed the usage of a prohibited method – the use of an IV in excess of 50 ML in a six-hour period – during a March 25, 2016, out-of-competition sample collection and was removed from his scheduled bout against Cole Miller on June 4 in Los Angeles.

Few weeks back, Diego Ferreira has been removed from this month’s UFC Fight Night 88 event because of a potential failed drug test. In a statement, the UFC had then remarked that it was notified that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) informed Carlos Diego Ferreira of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation, stemming from a recent out-of-competition sample collection.

UFC welterweight Tim Means was also named by USADA for a positive drug test stemming from a tainted supplement. Means accepted a suspension of six months, retroactive to the February 3 date he was provisionally suspended for of a potential anti-doping violation. The 32-year-old Means was tested out-of-competition on January 21 and tested positive for Ostarine, a banned androgen modulator with anabolic properties. It was later found out that the banned substance came from a tainted supplement that the fighter admitted to using. He initially faced a suspension of two years as a first-time offender but his punishment was reduced in light of the tainted supplement. The United States Anti-Doping Agency had previously delivered a similar ruling for UFC middleweight Yoel Romero, who failed an out-of-competition test for a growth hormone substitute and subsequently proved his positive test stemmed from a tainted supplement.

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: UFC Featherweight Chad Mendes Flagged For ‘Potential’ USADA Violation

Thursday 12, Nov 2015

  Vitor Belfort Says He Is Ready To Move On

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Vitor Belfort, the Brazilian mixed martial artist and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, has remarked he is ready to move on in his life. The UFC 12 Heavyweight Tournament Champion also remarked he is not hiding anything and has always fought with the approval of a commission and the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

The 38-year-old Belfort has almost served as the de facto face of the testosterone replacement therapy argument. Belfort remarked fourteen men were in the treatment and twelve of them were Americans and the media kind of picked him up because of his success.

In 2013, the Brazilian knocked out Luke Rockhold, Dan Henderson, and Michael Bisping in a span of 10 months but with the help of TRT that is now banned but was completely legal at that time with a therapeutic use exemption. In September this year, it was reported by veteran reporter Josh Gross that testosterone levels of Belfort were significantly elevated before his light heavyweight title bid at UFC 152 against then-champ Jon Jones. In his defense, Belfort said he lives with a clean and clear conscience regarding his use of legally-administered performance enhancing substances. Belfort remarked he is one of the very few fighters who openly accepted they are on TRT and he is not like those who don’t come out and hide. The MMA fighter also remarked he was on TRT for medical reasons.

Belfort has passed five random drug tests ever since the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency took over the anti-doping efforts of the UFC this year. He passed four tests since October 1 and insisted he is at peace with his place in the world of mixed martial arts.

Belfort is not new to controversies. He tested positive for 4-hydroxytestosterone at Pride 32: The Real Deal on October 21, 2006. The MMA fighter argued that he bought an over the counter supplement that had the illegal substance and also explained that he could have received the drug because of rehabilitative injections given to him by Brazilian endocrinologist Dr. Rodrigo M. Greco. A statement from Dr. Greco was received by the Nevada State Athletic Commission that stated that he had given post-surgical injections containing testosterone to Vitor Belfort. NSAC remarked Belfort would still be guilty of a violation of the banned substances policy even if he was unaware that the medical practitioner did not inform him that injections contained anabolic steroids. Belfort was banned on December 21, 2006 for a period of nine months and was fined $10,000.

The Brazilian mixed martial artist is the #4 contender in official UFC middleweight rankings s of June 29, 2015 and was also the last Cage Rage World Light Heavyweight Champion. He was given the nickname The Phenom after he started competing in the UFC. At the age of 19, he became the youngest fighter to ever score a victory inside the Octagon. The former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion is expected to face Dan Henderson, the American mixed martial artist and former Olympic wrestler, in a rubber match at UFC Fight Night 77 on November 7, 2015.

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Tuesday 10, Nov 2015

  Georges St-Pierre Says Return Is Possible Soon

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Georges St-Pierre, a former three-time Welterweight Champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, has hinted a return to the UFC. The Canadian semi-retired mixed martial artist is going to attend a training camp for six weeks before he makes his decision on whether to fight or retire.

GSP has been training at the Renzo Gracie academy with eminent grapplers like Gary Tonon and others. He also spent a few days in LA visiting Freddie Roach’s gym. His long-time coach Firas Zahabi has also hinted at a potential return. Zahabi said Georges will beat anybody if he prepares with a training camp and added he thinks his star student has lots of fighting left.

St-Pierre decided to vacate the 170 lbs. title after he defeated Johny Hendricks in a controversial split decision in 2013. In September this year, UFC president Dana White said he believes GSP will never return and also remarked GSP is rich and is living the good life. White said you have to be hungry in this sport and want to be a world champion and Georges St-Pierre has already accomplished that and he does not see GSP ever coming back.

Georges St-Pierre recently pledged public support for longstanding rival Nick Diaz who bas banned for five years and heavily fined after he tested positive for marijuana. GSP remarked the ban imposed on Diaz was questionable, at the very least and also remarked the ban is huge especially when you think about Anderson Silva and other guys who were doping and received a lighter suspension compared to Nick.

 GSP also commented that he believes the Nevada State Athletic Commission wanted to make an example out of him to send a message because Nick is a colorful character who talks a lot and makes a lot of noise. Georges St-Pierre also said that fighters who have failed drug tests for marijuana should be treated differently than those who use anabolic steroids and other performance enhancers. The former three-time Welterweight Champion said marijuana could help someone that suffers from anxiety, but it won’t make you stronger or more powerful and he does not believe it should be judged upon so severely.

St-Pierre, considered by many as one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, was ranked as the #1 welterweight in the world for many years by Sherdog and several other publications. Born on 19 May 1981 in Quebec, Georges St-Pierre took up Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling, and boxing when he was 16. He received a black belt in Kyokushin before he turned professional at the age of 21. The MMA fighter made his UFC debut at UFC 46 and defeated highly ranked Karo Parisyan by unanimous decision in his first fight and then went on to defeat Jay Hieron at UFC 48 via technical knockout in only 1:42 of the first round. GSP defeated former UFC welterweight champion B.J. Penn at UFC 58 to become the No. 1 contender for the UFC welterweight title and won the match by split decision.

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Friday 23, Oct 2015

  Ronda Rousey Is Most Tested UFC Fighter

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The United States Anti-Doping Agency has completed its first round of testing of Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighters. USADA posted the results on a new athlete test history website. The information is arranged by search criteria sorted by names, year, quarter, and more.

The anti-doping agency primarily focused on ensuring UFC athletes have received the necessary education to understand their rights and responsibilities under the new anti-doping program. The first round of testing took three months and testing happened both in and out-of-competition. The United States Anti-Doping Agency commented that an education initiative – including prohibited substances and methods, whereabouts requirements, the sample collection process, dietary supplement awareness, therapeutic use exemption rules, as well as the general rules and guidelines of competing clean – was a concurrent priority.

USADA conducted 81 tests of 50 UFC fighters to date and UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey was screened the most with five tests. She was followed by Thiago Alves, Bethe Correia, and Antonio Silva who have been tested four times; Anthony Johnson and Jimi Manuwa were tested three times. The list of UFC fighters who were tested twice included UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo, Andrei Arlovski, Daniel Cormier, Todd Duffee, Cezar Ferreia, Claudia Gadelha, Alexander Gustafsson, Michael Johnson, Cris Justino, Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier, and others while those who were tested only once included notable names like Vitor Belfort, Erick Silva, Ryan Bader, Josh Barnett, John Dodson, Dan Henderson, Johny Hendricks, UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson, Roy Nelson, and Tyron Woodley.

USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart said on USADA’s website that we have had the opportunity to speak with many athletes during this initial program phase, and we have appreciated their passion for protecting clean sport and their dedication to participating in a comprehensive anti-doping program. Tygart added the first three months have been right on track with the program launch plan, which necessarily included a large emphasis on the vitally important athlete education efforts. Now, with the whereabouts filing process complete, we begin the rollout of the full strategic out-of-competition testing plan.

In the second and now-current phase, UFC fighters would be required to complete their whereabouts file so that they can be contacted and tested in an easier way during out-of-competition windows.

USADA was hired by UFC in June 2015 to conduct and control their anti-doping programs. As part of UFC’s Athlete Marketing and Development Program, USADA started serving as the independent third-party administrator of UFC’s year-round Anti-Doping Policy beginning on July 1, 2015. The premier anti-doping agency is renowned globally for its mission to preserve the integrity of competition and protect the rights of clean athletes. Under the association, the United States Anti-Doping Agency would be responsible for independently administering all areas of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, including comprehensive education, testing, science and research, and results management. UFC also appointed Jeff Novitzky, the famed drug cop who almost singled-handedly took down BALCO, as UFC VP of Athlete Health & Performance in an attempt to restore credibility in the sport.

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Tuesday 29, Sep 2015

  Belfort Tested For Elevated Testosterone Before UFC 152

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Vitor “The Phenom” Belfort, the Brazilian mixed martial artist and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, has been the subject of heavy scrutiny and multiple controversies in the past and has found himself again in a controversy.

A special investigation has revealed the UFC 12 Heavyweight Tournament Champion tested positive for elevated testosterone in the state of Nevada just less than three weeks before fight night with Jon Jones at UFC 152 in Toronto. A document has revealed that the free testosterone levels of Vitor Belfort were two and half times high above the average for a man his age. This news emerged after the results that were supposed to be sent via email to three UFC executives were accidentally sent “to a group of 29 fighters, trainers, and managers,” including longtime MMA manager Monte Cox.

The UFC immediately went into damage control mode and sent another mass email that ordered the unintended recipients to delete the emails. The special investigation was penned by Josh Gross. A prominent fighter who saw the results came to the conclusion that Belfort had cheated and that the UFC had covered it up, according to Gross.

The special investigation had revealed that the administered test of Belfort on September 1, 2012 by Dr. Pierce measured 1038 nanograms of testosterone per deciliter. A person in the age range of Vitor Belfort is more likely to be in the 700s. His free testosterone levels were clearly elevated as the acceptable range listed on LabCorp metrics—standards vary between laboratories—is 8.7 to 25.1 picograms, or a trillionth of a gram, per milliliter while Belfort’s free testosterone registered 47.7 pg/ml.

The manager of disgraced pound-for-pound Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) star Jon Jones said Jones was not happy with the hidden positive test result of Belfort. Malki Kawa, the manager of Jon Jones, said Jones is very angry about this. Jones defeated “The Phenom” inside Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada via fourth-round submission. Jones is angry because the UFC knew of the results and failed to disclose them to the Jones and the public. Belfort, a known user of performance enhancing drugs, injured the elbow of Jones in the fight.

Welterweight champion Ben Askren came in support of Jon Jones. Askren compared handling of the Belfort result by the UFC to the UFC 182 pre-fight test for cocaine metabolites of Jones, a test that was never supposed to be made public. Askren said it is hilarious that Jon Jones tested positive for cocaine in a test which he should not have been tested for as they are not supposed to test for recreational drugs outside of competition while Belfort tested positive for a substance, or was over the limits for a substance he wasn’t supposed to be using, and that was covered up.

In June 2014, Belfort had admitted that he tested positive for testosterone levels outside the therapeutic range in February. Following the drug test, all Testosterone Replacement Therapy exemptions were abolished by the Nevada State Athletic Commission and the Brazilian mixed martial artist withdrew from his UFC middleweight title bout with Chris Weidman.

pdf_iconDownload in PDF: Belfort Tested For Elevated Testosterone Before UFC 152

Sunday 27, Sep 2015

  Nick Diaz Banned For Life By UFC

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The UFC has given a “lifetime ban” to Welterweight Nick Diaz after a suspension of five years was imposed on the former American mixed martial artist who is currently signed with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Diaz failed a third positive test for marijuana and his suspension could most certainly end his time in the Octagon. The 33-year-old Diaz tested positive for marijuana metabolites following his fight with Anderson Silva at UFC 183 on 31 January. Diaz however passed two other drug tests on fight night.

The controversy comes in that two other samples of Nick Diaz passed drug tests analyzed by the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory (SMRTL) that is acknowledged and accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency. The third failed test, that was administered in-between the two clean tests, was analyzed by a different agency in Quest Diagnostics. The team of Diaz claims that the results were “scientifically unreliable” given that the results of SMRTL were reached using the higher standard of drug testing protocols of WADA.

The fight between Silva-Diaz was ruled a no-contest after Anderson Silva tested positive for anabolic steroids and received a doping ban of one year and fined $380,000.

In 2007, Diaz was suspended by the NSAC for six months after he tested positive for Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). In 2012, Diaz was banned for a year for testing positive for marijuana metabolites following a defeat to Carlos Condit.

On Monday, the Nevada State Athletic Commission met to discuss Diaz’s third failed test. NSAC commissioner Skip Avansino said a five-year ban would essentially be the same as “a lifetime [ban] for [Diaz].” The NSAC voted unanimously to ban Diaz for five years, meaning he would not be eligible to make a return until 2020. The UFC fighter was also fined $165,000. Diaz was present during the hearing but decided not to answer any question. Commissioner Pat Lundvall had to force Diaz to verbally plead the fifth in his stance of silence during the hearing that had around 30 questions.

Upon hearing the verdict, Diaz spoke to media and labeled the Commission a “bunch of dorks”. Diaz’s attorney, Lucas Middlebrook, said his client will appeal against the ban after a decision was made in what he claimed to be a “kangaroo court”. The argument of Middlebrook is based on the failed test of Diaz containing five times the legal limit of marijuana metabolites while the other two tests were well below the allowable level. Middlebrook argues that the results cannot be judged to be reliable given the difference between the failed test and the two clean tests.

Middlebrook also said a box marked “observed” was not filled in by the collector that means Nick Diaz may have been unsupervised when he provided it. It was also added that the name of Diaz was included on the sample when all tests are meant to be anonymous to remove any bias and prevent tampering. However, the NSAC remained unmoved and stood by its decision and defended the testing techniques of Quest despite Diaz being a registered medical-marijuana user.

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