Monday, November 28, 2022

Conor McGregor gives long-awaited UFC return timeline update

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Former two-part UFC champion Conor McGregor recently tweeted that he would resume mandatory drug testing at the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) in February in a bid to line him up for a possible return to the Octagon next summer.

The Irishman’s fans haven’t seen him fight in the UFC’c cage since July 2021 at UFC 264. That night, his trilogy match with Dustin Poirier was called off after “Notorious” broke his leg in the first round. The match was suspended and McGregor has been on the mend ever since.

McGregor, who recently wrapped filming on a “Road House” remake, is not part of USADA’s random testing pool, UFC President Dana White confirmed at the UFC 280 post-fight press conference in October.

In order for fighters to be eligible for promotion, they must undergo random testing for at least six consecutive months. And since Notorious hadn’t been tested, White said he would have to undergo the full six months before he could fight again.

Well, McGregor took to Twitter on November 23 to confirm he was “free for testing in February”. “I’m going to do my two USADA tests and we’re booking a fight,” McGregor said tweeted.

So if Notorious started back with USADA in February, he probably wouldn’t be able to fight until August 2023 at the earliest.

“I’m the greatest purebred visitor of all time,” McGregor said continued. “There’s no one around. Piss is the rest.”

Even if a fighter wishes to take a few months off competition, they must remain enrolled in the USADA program to be considered an active fighter. Should they take themselves out, they will have to restart the six-month requirement.

“Once UFC athletes are enrolled in the testing program, they will be tested — even if they are not competing — unless they notify the UFC of their retirement, their contract is terminated, or they are otherwise removed from the program,” said the USADA in a statement to TSN.

“In the event of an athlete returning to the UFC, they must remain in the USADA testing pool for six months before being allowed to compete. Similar to the World Anti-Doping Agency Rules, the UFC may grant an exception to the six-month written notice rule in exceptional circumstances or when strict application of that rule would be manifestly unfair to the athlete, but in either case pursuant to the UFC Rules, the athlete must submit at least two negative samples before returning to competition. We do not comment on the status of any particular athlete’s testing pool.”

Notorious appears physically larger than ever. The Irishman regularly shares body photos and pictures on his social media.

In fact, in July 2021, McGregor looks so much taller than his 155-pound physique that some have accused Notorious of using steroids.

In September, McGregor responded to a Twitter user asking what he was “using.”

“Proper Twelve and Forged Irish Stout”, McGregor answered. “Served alongside my own organic Irish beef, served on a hot stone. Tidl spray for pain.”

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