Conor McGregor right at the heart of major UFC and USADA dispute
"We can confirm that Conor McGregor has re-entered the USADA testing pool."
It has been confirmed that The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) will end it's partnership with UFC over a disagreement regarding Conor McGregor.
The Irish megastar has re-entered the USADA testing pool, but in order to compete in the UFC again, McGregor would have to be in the pool for at least six months, return at least two negative tests, and zero positive ones, for him to fight again.
McGregor hasn't fought since he broke his leg in a second straight loss to Dustin Porier back in July 2021, and if protocol was met, then we wouldn't see him back in the cage until at least April 2024.
However, USADA won't actually be able to enforce this because their deal with the UFC will end on January after the relationship between the two organisations became ‘untenable’.
USADA confirmed that they were uncomfortable with the saga that was sparked when McGregor suggested that they might make an exception for him, so he can return to the sport at an earlier date.
USADA confirm split with UFC amid Conor McGregor dispute
Here is a statement from USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart regarding Conor McGregor re-entering the testing pool.
“We can confirm that Conor McGregor has re-entered the USADA testing pool as of Sunday, October 8, 2023.
"We have been clear and firm with the UFC that there should be no exception given by the UFC for McGregor to fight until he has returned two negative tests and been in the pool for at least six months.
"The rules also allow USADA to keep someone in the testing pool longer before competing based on their declarations upon entry in the pool and testing results. Unfortunately, we do not currently know whether the UFC will ultimately honor the six-month or longer requirement because, as of January 1, 2024, USADA will no longer be involved with the UFC Anti-Doping Program.
"Despite a positive and productive meeting about a contract renewal in May 2023, the UFC did an about-face and informed USADA on Monday, October 9, that it was going in a different direction.
"We are disappointed for UFC athletes, who are independent contractors who rely on our independent, gold-standard global program to protect their rights to a clean, safe, and fair Octagon.
"The UFC’s move imperils the immense progress made within the sport under USADA’s leadership. The relationship between USADA and UFC became untenable given the statements made by UFC leaders and others questioning USADA’s principled stance that McGregor not be allowed to fight without being in the testing pool for at least six months.
"One UFC commentator echoed this, recently declaring that USADA should not oversee the UFC program since we held firm to the six-month rule involving McGregor, and since we do not allow fighters without an approved medical basis to use performance-enhancing drugs like experimental, unapproved peptides or testosterone for healing or injuries simply to get back in the Octagon.
"Fighters’ long-term health and safety — in addition to a fair and level playing field — are more important to USADA than short-term profits at the expense of clean athletes.
"USADA is proud of the work we've done over the past eight years to clean up the UFC, and we will continue to provide our unparalleled service to UFC athletes through the remainder of our current contract, which ends December 31, 2023. As always, we will continue to uphold the rights and voices of clean athletes in all sport.”
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