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Cheaters beware! USADA just increased UFC drug testing for third quarter of 2016

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I've got bad news for those folks in the mixed martial arts (MMA) community who thought United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) jumped the shark after nabbing Jon Jones and Brock Lesnar, two of the biggest stars in Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

They're just getting warmed up.

UFC vice president of athlete health and performance, Jeff Novitzky, expects USADA to test 700 fighters in the third quarter of 2016, up from 450-550 the previous term while marking the first quarter in which the anti-doping program is fully implemented.

Novitzky talked to MMA Fighting about the collateral damage that results from a successful program, including the decision to pull Jones from his UFC 200 headliner on short notice when his pre-fight urine sample came back so hot, two Hobbits tried to throw a ring into it.

"I don't take any pleasure that the program is working, seeing that happen. Sometimes one or two of those needs to happen for everybody to open their eyes. If anybody had any reservations about the seriousness, about the independence of the program, that it doesn't matter if you're the first on the depth chart of the roster or the last you're going to be treated the same under this program."

That's up for debate.

Unlike Jones, Lesnar was permitted to compete because his drug test results were not revealed until after the UFC 200 event had ended. As you might expect, that didn't sit well with opponent Mark Hunt, who dropped a unanimous decision to the WWE import, but Novitzky insists some situations are "inevitable."

As well as avoidable.

I suppose things will get worse before they get better, though you can't say this guy didn't warn us. It might be time to start laying odds on which fighter will pop from each card, as it seems to be a routine occurrence these days. For how much longer?

That remains to be seen.

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