After not competing in all of 2020, Yair Rodriguez is going to have to wait a few more months to return to action.
The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has suspended Yair Rodriguez for six months for a whereabouts violation. USADA officials made the announcement Thursday, providing more details on the violation and the sanction:
“Like all UFC athletes, Rodriguez, 28, is a member of the UFC Registered Testing Pool and is therefore subject to certain Whereabouts responsibilities, which allow him to be located for testing. Accurate Whereabouts information is a crucial component of an effective out-of-competition testing program because it enables anti-doping organizations to conduct no-notice sample collections, which helps maintain effective doping deterrence and detection.
“Rodriguez failed to update his Whereabouts information and was unavailable for testing at locations provided in his Whereabouts Filings on three occasions. He accrued a Whereabouts Failure in each of the first three quarters of 2020. The accumulation of three Whereabouts Failures within a 12-month period constitutes a policy violation under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy.”
The suspension is retroactive from September 8, making Yair Rodriguez eligible to compete in March. When asked about Rodriguez’s status at a recent press conference, Dana White expressed that we should not expect to see Rodriguez fight any time soon, and we now know what he was referring to.
In his most recent bout, Yair Rodriguez defeated Jeremy Stephens in a Fight of the Night-winning performance. Fans have been eager to see a fight between Rodriguez and Zabit Magomedsharipov and dating back to two years, and the fight was scheduled to happen in August, but Rodriguez pulled out of the fight, the third time he has done so against Magomedsharipov. The fight could still happen in March if the UFC and Magomedsharipov can wait a little bit longer.
What are your thoughts on this six-month suspension to Yair Rodriguez?