With numerous fighters failing drug tests for performance-enhancing drugs (PED) in recent months and casting a subsequent black eye on the UFC, the promotion and more specifically, the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) were forced to do something about it.
But that doesn’t mean anyone saw what was coming at today’s (May 15, 2015) NSAC meeting from Las Vegas.
News just broke that the commission has decided to make the shocking proposal that any fighter caught failing a drug test will have the result of his or her fight changed to a loss regardless of the previous result. Under the current system, fighters caught using drugs in-competition had their bouts changed to a no contest.
The announcement obviously creates a massive amount of questions and gray areas, as in how to deem a fight like January’s Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz where both fighters failed drug tests for different banned drugs.
The overall punishments were also increased for using various substances, including a mandatory 2-year ban and a hefty fine of 40-50 percent of the fighters’ purse, while failing for marijuana will earn you a nine-month suspension and a 20-30 percent fine.
Here is a list of the proposed NSAC punishments from today’s meeting courtesy of ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. Did the NSAC go too far, too fast, or are their harsher punishments a big step in the right direction for a sport that’s been plagued by drug use for far too long?
Proposed suspension lengths and fines for various substances at NSAC hearing. pic.twitter.com/jwUc04eRKC
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) May 15, 2015
Photo Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports