During the UFC 286 post-fight press conference, the promotion’s president, Dana White, punted when asked about Conor McGregor’s ongoing battle with the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
“Have you ever heard of (UFC senior VP of athlete health and performance) Jeff Novitzky? Ask him these questions. I don’t give a sh-t about any of that stuff anymore. That’s his problem. I don’t get involved in the drug testing situation whatsoever. I know nothing about it, and I don’t want to know nothing about it. I leave it to the expert. He’s the expert in this thing, and you guys call him and interview him anytime about it.”
USADA has not tested McGregor since the third quarter of 2021. Further, as of early February, the former two-division UFC champion, who reportedly removed himself from the USADA testing pool during his recovery for the broken leg he suffered against Dustin Poirier in July 2021, had yet to re-enter that pool.
With McGregor serving as a coach for the upcoming season of “The Ultimate Fighter,” the expectation is he will face Michael Chandler, the opposing TUF coach at the conclusion of the reality program’s run.
McGregor thinks he can produce “two clean tests and off I go.” On the other hand, USADA made it clear that unless the Irish fighter receives a pass from the UFC because of “exceptional circumstances,” he needs to be in the testing pool for six months before the UFC can book him for a fight.
USADA oversees the UFC’s drug testing program.
USADA have issued a statement regarding the comments made by Conor McGregor yesterday in regards to his eligibility to resume competition 👇 https://t.co/FNaBjMgUxX pic.twitter.com/ql9rz0RQWO
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) March 16, 2023
Bloody Elbow reached out to the UFC — per White’s instructions — to get a comment from Novitzky. We asked three questions of the promotion:
Does the UFC have any comment on the back-and-forth between Mr. McGregor and USADA on social media?
Does the UFC plan to offer Mr. McGregor a USADA testing exemption for “exceptional circumstances,” as USADA said was the right of the promotion?
Can the UFC confirm that Mr. McGregor must enter the USADA testing pool for six months before he can compete again for the UFC?
As of this writing the UFC nor Novitzky have responded.
The most recent update to the USADA athlete testing results page from March 16, 2023, shows that McGregor has yet to be tested this year.
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