A lot has been made over USADA since its partnership with the UFC began back in 2015. Fighters such as Georges St-Pierre had been calling for a clean sport for years, so when USADA was introduced in the UFC there were high hopes. Fast forward to 2019 and both the California and Nevada State Athletic Commissions are at odds with USADA and many fighters have had their careers in limbo. USADA has recently been under scrutiny for their handling of Jon Jones‘ anti-doping situation.
Dana White Backs USADA
During the UFC 235 press conference, White made it clear that he’s happy with the work USADA has done (via MMAJunkie.com):
“This or nothing – yes, it’s definitely working. And the goal is, when you have talented fighters like this, if you can keep them off these drugs, it creates longevity for their career. It’s a fact that people who use performance-enhancing drugs run into all types of problems with their career. And especially if they get caught, and they have to get off them. It’s completely life-changing. So, yeah, that was the goal when we started the USADA program. If you’re hitting balls over a wall with a stick, who gives a (expletive) if you’re using steroids. But if you’re in here fighting another human being, and you’re that much stronger and that much faster, it’s very dangerous, and it’s the right thing to do.”
Since USADA entered the fray, there have been a bevy of cases where fighters took tainted supplements and were popped for it. In those cases, USADA usually gives fighters a reduced sanction. We’ve also seen fighters such as Fabricio Werdum and Frank Mir ask for their UFC releases after being popped by USADA.
Do you think USADA is working out for the UFC?