Fertitta To Financially Aid NSAC – More Extensive Drug Testing Of UFC Fighters On Horizon

February 11, 2014 6:34 pm by Jim Chadwick

Drug testing in the world of mixed martial arts is a hot-button topic as of late.

With the growth and expansion that the UFC has seen in the past few years, the cost required to adequately test UFC fighters has grown and expanded right along with them. And unfortunately, at some point in time, you eventually exhaust state resources used to fund that testing.

Enter Lorenzo Fertitta.

Lorenzo is looking to correct that bottleneck, using his full financial support and cooperation to allow the commissions to test any UFC fighter, at any time, with any test that would be seen as necessary. This obviously includes the “typical” screenings (TRT, performance enhancing drugs, cannabis, etc.), but it will also include extensive screenings which – at present time – are too costly to be used effectively. Tests such as Carbon Isotope Ratio testing.

Yahoo Sports verified this news by contacting the new NSAC chairman, Francisco Aguilar, who confirmed that Fertitta had indeed made the offer. He stated:

All that has ever been communicated to us from Lorenzo, Lawrence [Epstein, the UFC’s chief operating office] and Marc [Ratner, its vice president of regulatory affairs] is that they’re in favor of testing. At no point has the UFC ever pushed back on any testing request we’ve made. We just did an enhanced testing program with Travis Browne and Josh Barnett for their fight [in December at UFC 168] and the UFC was fully supportive and did what we asked. Not only haven’t they pushed back, they’ve been the opposite. They’ve told us they’ve been open to any and all testing and would gladly pay for whatever tests we wanted to do.

Could this finally be the move that sets the wheels in motion? Could we soon see a day where – due to the extensive and rigorous testing available – all athletes fight clean, and on a level playing field?

We’ll have to wait and see.

By Jim Chadwick | Twitter

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