Ultimate Fighting Championship (USADA) contracted United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) to handle all pre- and post-fight drug tests for its entire roster of mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters, working in conjunction with local athletic commissions, to try to clean up the sport.
Probably not a bad idea, as to avoid more situations like this.
Since USADA took over in summer of 2015, several prominent fighters have found themselves in all sorts of trouble. But just because a fighter has been flagged for an anti-doping violation doesn't necessarily mean he or she was trying to "game the system" with performance-enhancing drugs.
"I think now you have USADA is in the business of trying to catch as many people as they can and they're trying to make the tests as sensitive as possible even before the tests are really plausible as far as, ‘well have you ruled out any other situations that could cause a false positive?' And they come forward with the tests before that's conclusive because they want to justify their paycheck at the end of the day. I think they're in a situation where not that many people are really trying to cheat so now they're trying to make the tests so extensive that they can find the minutest molecule someone might come in contact with but in a lot of situations, to really tell someone that they're responsible for everything that enters into their body - we've already seen situations like Yoel Romero and Tim Means are buying supplements from the store and they're getting in trouble. Then overseas guys eating tainted meats and now all of a sudden they test positive for clenbuterol. It's overboard I think I think right now we're losing a lot of fighters. We lost Machida because he forgot to put something on his paperwork, B.J. Penn didn't understand the new testing and took an IV months before the fight, not even a weight cutting situation. So I think we're losing a lot of main event fighters to situations that are not actually cheating."
And USADA insists it's just getting warmed up.
Mir knows a thing or two about USADA testing, having popped for oral turinabol metabolites in the wake of his UFC Fight Night 85 loss to Mark Hunt last March in Australia. The culprit may or may not have been tainted kangaroo meat (seriously), but his B-sample failed to exonerate him.
Mir, following the incident, asked for his UFC release and remains a critic of USADA testing.