Famed MMA coach Firas Zahabi Shocked by UFC’s Split with USADA: ‘One guy is going to ruin it for everybody’

Firas Zahabi

Famed MMA coach Firas Zahabi was shocked to learn of the UFC’s imminent split with the United States Anti-Doping Agency.

Last month, USADA CEO Travis Tygart revealed that the two organizations would no longer work together come January 1, 2024, ending an eight-year partnership. At the center of the bitter split was Irish megastar Conor McGregor, whose long-awaited return to the Octagon put a strain on the relationship between the UFC and USADA, making it “untenable” according to Tygart.

The news came completely out of left field and caused quite a stir in the MMA community with coaches, fighters, and fans concerned that without a third party to handle testing duties, the UFC could essentially make up their own rules and find ways around them at will.

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GSP Coach Firas Zahabi Shocked that ‘One Guy is going to ruin it for everybody’

Firas Zahabi, head of Tristar Gym in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, offered his take on the situation via a video on the gym’s YouTube channel.

“I just saw a headline and I don’t even remember the headline but there could be a lot more to it, obviously. If that’s the case, man, what can I say? I’m speechless, man,” Zahabi said. “I’m speechless. That’s ridiculous. One guy is going to ruin it for everybody? We need drug testing guys, it’s out of control. The drugs are out of control, am I the last natural guy left?” (h/t BJPenn.com).

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Conor McGregor re-entered the USADA testing pool last month, just in time for a return at the promotion’s next milestone event, UFC 300, in April.

With the UFC opting for an in-house testing system headed up by ex-FBI special agent George Piro, the Irishman could theoretically return anytime after December 31, 2023, but with Dana White announcing three blockbuster title fights to headline the first three pay-per-view events of the new year, McGregor’s rumored return at UFC 300 appears to be all but confirmed.