Brazilian jiu-jitsu icon Gordon Ryan welcomes the news of USADA’s departure as the official anti-doping agency of the UFC, effective January 2024.
USADA CEO Travis Tygart conveyed this development through an official statement. Tygart asserted that the relationship between USADA and the UFC had become ‘untenable’, citing the incident involving Conor McGregor re-entering the testing. Additionally, negative remarks from UFC color commentator Joe Rogan were hinted at as a potential factor in the split.
Gordon Ryan candidly expressed his sentiments about the strained relationship between USADA and the UFC. He spoke about it on Instagram by making the following statement:
“If the UFC ‘regresses’ back to the old days, this is amazing news. The reason people watch professional sports is almost exclusively for entertainment value. Few people who watch pro sports have any real desire to excel at those same sports, so really, they are just watching for the most entertainment.”
“The higher the testosterone, the more physical the athletes are, the less prone to injury they are, the faster they recover, the longer they can compete, and the more entertaining and high paced they are. The better they look, the more attention they draw, the more money they make.”
Ryan further elaborated that even with USADA in place, athletes still find ways to circumvent the system.
“In addition, people think that just because athletes are being tested by USADA or WADA that they are natural LMAOOO. With the l amount of money, pride, and legacies on the line, BEATING dr*g tests has become a multi-billion dollar industry. This means that the athletes who have money or are a part of big teams with the resources needed are able to actually beat the tests.”
“This has historically been proven time and time again. This means top-tier athletes have the money and resources to use PED’s and get away with it, and up and comers don’t. This creates an uneven playing field. If there’s no testing, then every athlete can use what he or she wants, and the playing field is now level.”
Ryan has been instrumental in assisting UFC heavyweight champion Jon Jones in his preparations for the highly anticipated showdown with Stipe Miocic at UFC 295 on November 11.
Jones has had his share of encounters with USADA in the past, facing a setback when a failed PED test ahead of UFC 200 led to his exclusion from the historic event. Jones steadfastly maintained that the flag was due to a tainted supplement.
Furthermore, Jones witnessed his UFC 217 victory over Daniel Cormier being overturned due to another failed PED test, this time for Turinabol. Jones reiterated his innocence, affirming that only a trace amount of Turinabol was discovered in his system, and he had never intentionally ingested anything from the banned list.
UFC went on to announce they plan to honor the USADA partnership through January 2024 at which point they will test along with their new partner.
The UFC has chosen DFSI as its new testing provider, aiming for a “smarter, more efficient, more effective technology” in their efforts to stop PED abuse.
The UFC is taking legal action against USADA, demanding an apology and a retraction of their initial statement.
UFC’s Jeff Novitzky expressed frustration with USADA’s whereabouts policy and called USADA’s statement “garbage.”
Hunter Campbell, UFC’s Executive VP, stated that USADA’s actions concerning Conor McGregor are “disgusting,” and the agency might have legal liability.
The move will likely result in a significant change in the PED abuse landscape for UFC stars and raises questions about how the new partnership will impact the sport.