United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) is a name that MMA fans are very much aware of. In 2015, The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) decided to get into a contract with USADA to conduct drug tests for its fighters. However, there have been bumps on the road, and USADA’s role has come into question. The latest person to join the list of doubters is UFC commentator Joe Rogan.
Recently Canadian MMA journalist Aaron Bronsteter revealed a shocking report. According to him, the fighter to have the most number of USADA tests is Jiri Prochazka. In the third quarter of 2022, Prochazka provided a grand total of 27 samples! To put things into context, the second most number of samples provided by a fighter was 7. So the disparity is huge!
Athletes who have submitted the most samples in 2022:— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) October 26, 2022
J. Prochazka 51
M. Kape 15
K. Usman 15
M. Cirkunov 14
N. Magny 14
R. Namajunas 13
H. Cejudo 12
P. Costa 12
J. Masvidal 12
In total, the former UFC light heavyweight champ Jiri Prochazka was tested 51 times in 2022. Manel Kape and Kamaru Usman were the second most tested athletes with 15 tests each. Henry Cejudo, who recently re-entered the testing pool, provided 12 samples. But, interestingly, former UFC middleweight title contender Paulo Costa was tested only 12 times.
Jiri recently vacated the UFC light heavyweight belt after suffering a serious shoulder injury. Hence, he is out of his scheduled UFC 282 bout against Glover Teixeira. Instead, Jan Blachowicz and Magomed Ankalaev will headline the event PPV in December.
Joe Rogan is surprised by the irregularities in the USADA testing methods
During episode no. 1905 of his “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast, Rogan found out about the recent testing reports from the USADA. He was surprised to see the results and Rogan seemed very unconvinced about USADA’s choice of fighters to test.
“I wouldn’t say there is a lack of comprehensiveness in the USADA tests, but they are not bulletproof… Look at that though, that is so nuts, he (Jiri) is so much more tested than anyone else! Rose Namajunas got tested more than Paulo Costa, that’s crazy. Neil Magny got tested more than Paulo Costa. That is nuts!”
Paulo Costa has a history of failing a drug test and often jokes about being on “secret juice.” In 2017, Costa allegedly took some medication for his stomach pain. The medication apparently had a banned substance in the composition and it resulted in a positive drug test. So, testing Costa only 12 times, when USADA tested Rose Namajunas 13 times, did not sit right well with Joe Rogan.
In his podcast, Rogan also discussed the lack of transparency in USADA’s recent policies. UFC fighters can only escape USADA testing if they are officially retired or their contract with the company runs out. But, recent reports revealed that Conor McGregor was not in the USADA testing pool since the beginning of 2022 and has not been tested.
But, Conor is not out of contract with the UFC and he has not announced his retirement publicly. So it fired up the debate if McGregor was given preferential treatment because of his superstardom or not. But, USADA and Dana White later clarified that Conor will take part in the six-month mandatory testing period before fighting again. However, there is no proper clarification on why Conor was exempt from testing.