Coach John Kavanagh vehemently criticized USADA’s recent accusations aimed at Conor McGregor. He criticized the testing organization for disseminating a misleading story and expressed his confusion as to why they would use such strategies.
His remarks come in response to USADA CEO Travis Tygart’s scathing indictment of the UFC’s relationship with the testing agency, particularly addressing McGregor’s role in their fallout.
The Irishman fractured his leg during his July 2021 matchup with Dustin Poirier, forcing him to withdraw from competitive testing. Now Conor McGregor is prepared to make a comeback after a two-year hiatus.
According to USADA regulations, McGregor had to re-enter the testing pool for six months and pass at least two clean tests. But Tygart’s accusation suggested the UFC sought exceptions for McGregor’s return, souring relations between the promotion and USADA.
In an interview on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Kavanagh expressed his surprise. He stated: “I didn’t understand that at all; that was a very strange one. I would’ve understood if UFC was dropping USADA at the end of the year, and then there was an announcement, ‘Conor’s fighting January 15,’ or something like that. You could understand USADA being upset.”
He went on to say, “When I saw those statements from USADA and you guys over here, litigious and everything, I was like, ‘Why are you?… Sounds very b**chy or something. At least wait for the UFC to try and break the rules.”
Amid speculations about McGregor’s comeback, Kavanagh disclosed that McGregor might not step into the octagon until the latter half of 2024. His return might possibly coincide with International Fight Week in July.
Despite expectations of McGregor’s potential return at UFC 300 in April, Kavanagh’s recent dialogue with Ariel Helwani suggested otherwise.
Kavanagh expressed: “We were hoping for April, that was the hope, that is what we were told, now it seems to be the summertime… Are they holding him back for International Fight Week? I don’t really know… It is an extra couple of months.”