Saturday, October 13, 2012

One fighter granted TRT exemption, all drug tests negative from UFC 152 and UFC on Fuel 5

By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

The testosterone replacement therapy epidemic in MMA continues, as another fighter has competed on a UFC event while undergoing the treatment. This time, however, we don't know which fighter it was.

According to a report from, UFC vice president of government and regulatory affairs Marc Ratner revealed on Thursday that one fighter on either the UFC 152 event or UFC on Fuel 5 event competed while on the controversial treatment. Ratner would not reveal who the individual was, instead saying only that the fighter tested within "allowable limits."

The UFC conducted their own testing for both events, which took place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and Nottingham, England, respectively. The Ontario commission does not conduct their own drug testing, and there is no overseeing body for mixed martial arts in the UK. Ratner added that of all tests conducted for the two events, all results came back negative for performance enhancing substances or for drugs of abuse.

Penick's Analysis: This is a case where not only did someone have to compete against a fighter on TRT, now they don't even know for sure after the fact. There are a lot of things wrong with the current acceptance of TRT in MMA by commissions and by the UFC, but to not know your opponent has been approved for this drug when you're stepping into a cage against them seems wrong. High profile cases like Chael Sonnen are clear, but then we have scenarios like with Frank Mir, whose TRT use wasn't revealed until after he had been defeated by Junior dos Santos earlier this year. The UFC's "self-regulation" outside of the US has even less transparency than with the commissions, and that doesn't breed any confidence in the efforts being made to curb the use of performance enhancers. And there's no reason to believe - based on what we've seen thus far with TRT - that there is any comprehensive testing in place for fighters utilizing the treatment on international events. This continues to be an issue in the sport, and it seems it's only getting more prevalent.


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