Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Bantamweight contender Augusto Mendes has been notified of a potential United States Anti Doping (USADA) violation and has been subsequently pulled from his upcoming bout against Merab Dvalishvili, which was set to go down on April 21, 2018 at UFC Fight Night 128 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
UFC officials released a statement regarding the unfortunate news:
The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Augusto Mendes of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collected on March 7, 2018. Due to the proximity of Mendes’ upcoming scheduled bout at UFC FIGHT NIGHT: BARBOZA vs. LEE in Atlantic City, New Jersey on April 21, 2018 against Merab Dvalishvili , Mendes has been removed from the card and the UFC is currently seeking a replacement. USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case involving Mendes. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full and fair legal process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. Additional information will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward
As per protocol, details regarding what substance Mendes popped hot for were kept close to the vest.
“Tanquinho” hasn’t competed since losing to Aljamian Sterling in April of 2017. The Brazilian bomber was slated to make his return to action this past October against Boston Salmon at UFC Fight Night 119, but a leg injury forced him out of his scheduled fight against.
Depending on what kind of punishment USADA levies against him, it could be a very long time before Mendes sees the inside of the Octagon again.