Sean O’Malley Off UFC 229 Following Failed Drug Test

BJ Penn
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A failed drug test has forced Sean O’Malley off UFC 229.

The rising bantamweight star announced on Instagram tonight (Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018) that he had failed a USADA-mandated drug test. The failure forced him off of his scheduled bout with Jose Quiñonez at this weekend’s UFC 229.

The UFC recently announced some changes to their current drug testing partnership with USADA. Perhaps the biggest change came in the form of fighter failures not being announced until their case was resolved. This was due to cases involving unintentional use tarnishing fighters’ reputations.

O’Malley said he’s currently dealing with such a case himself. He wanted to get ahead of the game as a result. ‘Sugar’ announced the current issue to fans on social media.

He claimed he’s identified the dietary supplement which caused the failure:

O’Malley is maybe the UFC’s fastest-rising star at the lower weight divisions. He calls this setback only a “speed bump on the way to greatness,” but this is certain to be more than that as a result.

The well-liked prospect has built a large following in his first full year on the official UFC roster. He was fighting on by far his biggest card at UFC 229. Conor McGregor will be facing Khabib Nurmagomedov in the main event. It’s tough to get a better card on which to gain exposure.

O’Malley is a highly-publicized user of marijuana. It’s unknown whether or not his failed drug test involves the oft-discussed use of cannabis. His words make it seem like it’s more of a performance-enhancing drug issue due to a tainted supplement.

He admitted he wanted to as open as possible even though his failure would have remained private under the new rules:

“Even though under the new policy, my case would not be public right now, I feel it’s important to be upfront and honest with my fans. We’ve sent remaining samples from the bottle I took to the USADA lab and [sic] as well as a full-sized bottle. I’m told the testing of these supplements can take as long as 30 days.”

“Sugar” won all three of his UFC bouts thus far. His most recent was a decision win over Andre Soukhamthath in March. He broke his foot and has been out since. His return on the UFC’s biggest-ever card will never materialize.

Another big-name talent is on the sidelines due to USADA regardless. Let’s hope it’s not for too long.